Actor Nicolas Cage found himself involved in an international incident centering on a dinosaur skull after he bought the skull at an auction, and he has agreed to do his part to get the skull returned to its rightful owner, The New York Times reports.
“Eight years ago, the skull of a Tyrannosaurus bataar was the star artifact in a natural history-themed luxury auction in Manhattan. It sold for $276,000 to an anonymous buyer,” The Times reports. “As it turns out, the skull had been stolen from the Gobi Desert in Mongolia, and the buyer was Nicolas Cage, an actor who among his dozens of films, has starred in a movie franchise about the hunt for rare treasures.”
Cage’s publicist reportedly confirmed that Cage bought the skull from the Beverly Hills gallery I.M. Chait in 2007.
“The Department of Homeland Security contacted Mr. Cage about the skull last year, and the actor agreed to turn it over,” the story reports.
The Tyrannosaurus bataar is a close relative of the more famous Tyrannosaurus rex.