A rare two-headed snake that almost starred in a Nicolas Cage movie died at a New Orleans zoo.
Harvey, who was believed to be around 14 years old, was gifted to the Audubon Zoo by Cage in 2008, according to the zoo’s Instagram page.
He died from “health issues related to old age” on Thursday, the zoo said.
Harvey has made quite the name for himself over the years.
The snake was almost cast in Cage’s 2009 Werner Herzog-helmed movie “Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans,” Interview Magazine reported.
“We had a big party, Werner came over, and, at the time, I owned a two-headed snake, which I had spent a lot of money on and subsequently donated to the Audubon Zoo,” Cage told Interview Magazine in October. “But I brought it out, and everybody was freaked out by it. Werner said, ‘Now, Nicolas, we have to put that into the movie.’ I said, ‘No, I’m not putting it into the movie because this is personal.’ So he filled the movie with snakes, iguanas, and alligators, but he never got the two-headed snake.”
Harvey “was named after Batman villain Harvey Dent ― also known as Two-Face,” the Audubon Zoo said.
His heads were both functional, “although one was clearly more dominant than the other,” the zoo said. Both heads also shared “a single pair of every other organ” and two brains.
Although it’s rare for snakes to have two heads, it can happen when there is an “incomplete division of twins during their embryological development,” the zoo wrote on Instagram.
“Embryos with this abnormality” usually don’t survive and die, the zoo said. Those who do hatch have a hard time reaching adulthood or will have underlying health issues and “internal anatomical deformities that cause problems.”
“Harvey will be missed dearly,” the zoo said on Instagram. “Please keep our Herpetology team and the many others who loved Harvey in your thoughts.”
Harvey isn’t the only snake to make headlines recently.
A two-headed snake in Missouri that eats from both mouths celebrated its 16th birthday in late August, McClatchy News previously reported.