Has everyone read Melena Ryzik’s crackerjack profile of prolific actor Sir Michael Caine in The New York Times? It’s pretty great! He explains his “eye trick” for looking at both a camera and subject simultaneously, the weird back-story he made up for Alfred in Nolan’s Batman series (though it’s pretty inconsistent, since he talks about Bruce Wayne meeting Alfred in a military mess hall, when we all KNOW that Alfred has been with the Wayne family since before Bruce was born, no d’uh), and how he slept with all of Hollywood and everything before falling for his wife after seeing her in a commercial for Maxwell Coffee.
But there was one specific quote of Caine’s, seemingly benign, that made us believe both he and the Times were in on the most famous joke about the actor.
The last line of the piece ends with Sir Michael Caine talking about his future roles. “For $10 million I’ll do a movie. But nobody’s offered me that yet. I look at e-mail every morning to see.”
Which reminded us of this ubiquitous British joke that actor Cary Elwes told during a Loveline episode in 2004, when he was promoting Saw.
(Clip starts at 1:02)
Cary Elwes: One day his agent calls him and says “Hey Michael, I have a script for you.”
And Michael said, “Oh yeah, what’s it about?”
And the agent says, “Well it’s about a million dollars.”
And Michael went, “Right, I’ll do it!”
Obviously, Sir Caine has now moved that number up to account for inflation.