Nicolas Cage is to star in 'The Humanity Bureau'.

The 52-year-old actor will portray a caseworker who tries to save the lives of a single mother (Sarah Lind) and her son (Jakob Davies) in the futuristic sci-fi thriller.

The movie is set in 2030, a time when Earth has been ravaged by the effects of Global Warming. It takes its title from a newly-formed government agency in the American Midwest, which has the job of identifying members of society it feels are unproductive in the recession-hit region, and has them exiled to a colony called New Eden.

Lind's character and her son have been sentenced to banishment, so it's up to Cage's alter ego to save them from their fate.

Rob King is directing the movie, from a script written by Dave Schultz.

'The Humanity Bureau' - which also stars Hugh Dillon - is shooting now in Canada and is expected to be released next year.

Cage can currently be seen in 'Dog Eat Dog' and has a number of other movies on the way, meaning there are lots of sober times ahead for the actor as he recently admitted he restricts drinking to once a week when he's working on a movie.

He said: ''I'm a very serious person when it comes to my work ethic. I have to manage my lifestyle if I want to perform at the top level. If I want to drink when I'm working, it's on a Friday night and not after that. You have to have nothing in your body on Monday, because your anxiety levels go up. You have to stay relaxed so you can get the dialogue out. You've got a camera rolling and people relying on you, you've got to get the job done.''

However, Cage still likes to have fun at work because a good atmosphere on set helps the entire creative process.

He said: ''I'm going to try and have fun - because that will help the performance. If I don't have fun, I've always thought the audience isn't going to have fun.''