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Topic: Copperfield's Greatest Illusion
Message: Posted by: daffydoug (Dec 30, 2004 08:06PM)
Looking back on David and his career, and thinking about the astonishing variety of illusions, is there one that stands out in your mind as the best?

To tell you the truth, myself, I always got the biggest charge out of his Orson Well's illusion. Don't have any idea how he did it (brought Orson back and had him interact with the audience) but I'll tell you one thing: that illusion had class! I just SO enjoyed it. And the person who impersonated Orson was PERFECT. (If indeed it WAS an impersonator!) I think this will go down as one of my all time favorites.
Message: Posted by: Jack Murray (Dec 30, 2004 08:15PM)
That WAS indeed Orson Wells!!! It was a clip from an old movie and some clever editing. The methodology itself was VERY simple....David just wrote his "script" to match the film clip, and forced the choosen card.

Jack
Message: Posted by: reedrc (Dec 31, 2004 01:44AM)
I heard Orson's family was [upset] about it and tried to sue or something...
Message: Posted by: daffydoug (Dec 31, 2004 06:12AM)
[quote]
On 2004-12-30 21:15, Jack Murray wrote:
That WAS indeed Orson Wells!!! It was a clip from an old movie and some clever editing. The methodology itself was VERY simple....David just wrote his "script" to match the film clip, and forced the choosen card.

Jack
[/quote]

Well,, the end result was tremendous. What really threw me was the fact that Orson kept referring to David by name! And he was asking about the CARD specifically. What old Orson movie WAS that that had all these elements in it?

[quote]
On 2004-12-31 02:44, reedrc wrote:
I herd Orson damily was p I s s e d about it and tried to sue or something...
[/quote]
That's a trip! Is that true? Did you hear how it turned out?
Message: Posted by: Michael Dustman (Dec 31, 2004 04:08PM)
I don't know enough on the story to say what the final outcome was, but wanted to clear up part of it in all fairness to David (as I understand the events).

David believed that he did everything above board. Apparently, Orson created the old movie clip in the early 40's for Richard Himber. David paid a good sum of money to obtain the movie clip and credits Richard Himber in the credits of that show. So David paid for it and properly credited it.

(As I understand, David did edit him saying his name, but that was minor).

At some point, Welle's family felt that they controlled his estate and did not believe David was right to obtain it without their consent. I don't know who actually had the rights to sell it, but David truly felt he pursued it the proper way. After Welle's family voiced thier displeasure, it was removed from the show. (Although, it had probably served it's rotation in the show anyway.)

Great bit nonetheless.

For the record....I have had the opportunity to see every one of his illusions live over the past 15 years, with the exception of the Big Black Box. It was not in the touring show for too long. As far, as sheer drama, WOW factor, and storyline (and the age old question magicians always ask one another...if you could obtain the rights to one trick of Copperfields, which would it be) I would say his current routine Lottery. But I want the original storyline he was using before the Lincoln Convertible. Back when it he was using a Studebaker Commander. That story had more meaning for me for various reasons.
Message: Posted by: daffydoug (Jan 1, 2005 09:18AM)
I'm not familiar with his lottery routine. Could you elaborate?
Message: Posted by: Terry Holley (Jan 2, 2005 04:37PM)
I think "Death Saw" has to be right up there as one of the greatest of all illusions, not just of David's.

You may not agree as you look back on it many years later, but when you saw it for the first time it was a real killer (pun intended).

Terry
Message: Posted by: TOTALLY MAGIC (Jan 2, 2005 06:47PM)
Im not saying its the best but I did like the berkly house illusion I really liked when the ghost went out into the crowd.Kyle
Message: Posted by: daffydoug (Jan 2, 2005 07:26PM)
Several ghosts. How the *** did he do that? Had to be a video edit. Blew me away, though!
Message: Posted by: dsilverfield (Jan 3, 2005 03:07AM)
No video eidts on that one. I hear Sean Bogunia is working on similar lines.
Message: Posted by: Kevin Ridgeway (Jan 3, 2005 10:49AM)
Similar lines?...no pun intended I assume...LOL


Kevin
Message: Posted by: Farrell (Jan 3, 2005 11:49AM)
The fan and the blade both effing rock
Message: Posted by: rtgreen (Jan 3, 2005 12:19PM)
It goes back a few years, but I think the Orient Express vanish was great (even though it's TV only).
Message: Posted by: daffydoug (Jan 3, 2005 04:35PM)
I have most of the specials on tape, and Orient Express was fabulous. I loved the card effect he performed in the dining car for Jayne whats her name. (The first part, where the cards ended up "back in the box".) Close to one that Michael Ammar taught on his easy to master tapes, but I believe an entirely different method.
Message: Posted by: Magicjess76 (Jan 3, 2005 06:05PM)
The Orient Express was definitely one of his Best! Flying was perhaps the most mystifying of his illusions. The Graffiti Wall was also very good! (I laugh every time I watch it!) I have to say though that I miss when DC used story lines to present his magic.
~Jessica
Message: Posted by: isaacfawlkes (Jan 3, 2005 06:44PM)
In my opinion His best was Flying. I have seen it on TV and live. It was even more impressive live. To me it was real magic.
Message: Posted by: WayneNZ (Jan 3, 2005 09:31PM)
"cocoon " was very very cool.
Sure beats the heck out of a standard
sub truck.
Message: Posted by: The Mirror Images (Jan 3, 2005 10:15PM)
Well the staging for that was out of the world....plus the presentation was amazing....again anouther wounderful Illusion..

One of my favorite and I love to watch over and over is the buzz saw and lottery when the car appears...Now that was pure magic...when you get a 5 min standing ovation from that then it is a hell of a illusion...


Michael
Message: Posted by: rtgreen (Jan 3, 2005 10:31PM)
Does anyone remember the routine where he reproduces all of the kids for the old nanny? To me that was DC's low point.
Message: Posted by: Dr.Maya Baalaamurugaan (Jan 4, 2005 12:49AM)
What you mean by low point rtgreen???????????
Message: Posted by: MDS (Jan 4, 2005 12:54AM)
I would say that his Greatest Illusion is staying popular for as long as he has.
Message: Posted by: Brandon Delgado (Jan 5, 2005 09:28AM)
There are several that stand out to me:
Flying
Cocoon
The Fan
Portal/Reunion

After seeing all of these, I just remember thinking "Holy ...!" I have seen all of them live, and they are better than on TV.
Message: Posted by: Magicmatt1982 (Jan 5, 2005 03:54PM)
For me it has always been the snow story of his. I know how it is done but the wya he does it is it so pretty it is not even funny
Message: Posted by: daffydoug (Jan 5, 2005 04:05PM)
He is a master at touching that emotional chord in people. I saw "flying" in person and it was fabulous. I can never forget it. The musical selection was perfect.
Message: Posted by: NFox (Jan 5, 2005 04:17PM)
To dust off an old joke...his greatest illusion went by the name Claudia. I still can't figure that one out. But seriously folks: I think his greatest illusion was either flying or snow, simply for their grace and beauty as well as his ability to touch emotional chords with both of them.

Nick Fox
Message: Posted by: daffydoug (Jan 7, 2005 05:59PM)
You know what? I think one of the best things david has ever done was to add LITTLE touches to hsi show that just enhance everything. For instance, in the flying routine, when he takes his fist and makes a little drumming sound on the plexiglass box, then byu his body language, he invites the volunteer to do the same. And davis plays another rhythym, and the guy coppies it, and it keeps going until he is drumming out a wild rhythym. The audience ate this up. It was a way of adding appeal to the whole routine.

Or the bit with the baloon when he is doing Sankey's card in balloon routine, and he does this squeaking noise with the balloon, and the girl is invited to try it, and the routine continues until it is revealed that the noise is not really coming from the balloon but from a toy squeaker that he had hidden in his mouth. Remember that? It was a beautiful way for him to establish rapport. these kind of bits of business set him apart. And above all, David seems to KNOW what works for him and his show.

Now the big question: Were these volunteers in these two routines bonified audience members, or were they PLANTS? I have wondered about that for a long time.
Message: Posted by: NFox (Jan 7, 2005 08:31PM)
If the people paid to see his show, they will likely go along with most things he throws at them. So I would venture to say that they are in fact "bonifide."

Nick Fox
Message: Posted by: Regan (Jan 7, 2005 11:47PM)
I also think that Flying may be the best of the many great illusions DC has performed.

Regan
Message: Posted by: The Mac (Jan 8, 2005 10:45AM)
Speaking of the sweet little touches..there's one moment that makes me smile: its during the snow performance..as he stands on the table and he starts his hand movements..the first bit of snow takes a bit of time to come out..when it does watch davids mouth he quietly says to himself "yesss..." I cant say why..but its that moment that makes it even more touching..Maybe becuase its like he is feeling like it is real magic? anyone agree?
Message: Posted by: Chris Stolz (Jan 8, 2005 12:05PM)
I saw David two years ago in Vancouver and the lottery and car illusion were absolutely outstanding. When he finished the lottery and moved swifty into place for the car illusion I remember saying quietly to myself as the fabric box was being formed, "No way....You'd better not produce that *** car......Aw ***it your going to." When the card was revealed I thought two things: The first was how plastic the car looked, followed by how much I didn't care because it was just pulled off so well.

That's my two cents.

-Chris.
Message: Posted by: The Mac (Jan 8, 2005 01:52PM)
Does anyone know where I can see clips of DC illsuons online, especially things like the fan anf lottery and torando of fire illusions?
Message: Posted by: NFox (Jan 8, 2005 02:58PM)
Lottery is nowhere to be found online, becuase he hasn't done it on television yet. There is a site that I know of that has a lot of his other illusions, but it is a site that reveals his illusions and thus do not feel right in posting it. Sorry, maybe someone else knows of another site out there.

Nick Fox
Message: Posted by: gandalf (Jan 8, 2005 04:21PM)
There were two of this routines I greatly enjoyed.
1. His flying rotuine (totally amazed me!)
2. The sawing in half - i.e. the escape that "in theory" goes wrong. His body is then turned around and he touches his feet, amazing!
Message: Posted by: Ben G (Jan 9, 2005 01:37PM)
Even if I had a bad encounter and memory after meeting Mister Copperfield, he is still for me one of the best performer and I would say that The portal which has a great storyline as does the lottery are my favorites now.
As to the way he treats the spectators and how he behaves, there is a lot to be said there. But after all, he is just human and besides of his talents, he has some majors issues to resolves if he wants to be a better person.
Just my 2 cents of course...
Message: Posted by: Adam J (Jan 16, 2005 08:47AM)
I had the chance to see David Copperfield live last year (I think?) in Boston. Although I don't like him and my family despises him (long story), he was AMAZING! We had great seats, and I agree that his Lottery and Car illusion was amazing. People surrounded the emtpy pillar and then the car just appeared in a gust of wind...from NOWHERE! It was truly a sight to see. I have his DVD with most of his stuff, and Orient Express is pretty cool too :)

Adam
Message: Posted by: The Mac (Jan 16, 2005 05:23PM)
Love dc stories good or bad..please post more! n if anyone has video clips up on a web page..would be grateful for that link!
Message: Posted by: theaterfreak89 (Jan 16, 2005 11:14PM)
Flying flying flying!!!! My buddy and I sat down for 5 hourse once and watched it over and over. I come from a theatrical special effects background so I'm familiar with the methodology, but the presentation is just beautiful. The whole swimming motif and the pulling himself up bits were just fantastic. And judging by the fluidity of his landings, you can tell why it took him 7 years to perfect. And cocoon isn't too bad either. I scream out loud every time I watch it. :P
Theres my 5 dollars.
Message: Posted by: garcia00 (Jan 17, 2005 12:16AM)
Wasn't the orsen wells trick on tv once?
Message: Posted by: benscholz99 (Jan 17, 2005 08:43AM)
I agree with Ben G portal has a great(but somewhat cheesy at points) storyline which makes my favorite illusion portal. It is less the appearance and the proof, but that beautiful vanish. I was in the fifth row once and it blew my mind.

Ben
Message: Posted by: reasons14 (Jan 17, 2005 11:52AM)
His lottery routine is amazing. Anyone like his laser illusion??
Message: Posted by: The Mirror Images (Jan 17, 2005 12:35PM)
I love both of them. The car got a standing ovation for over 5 mins. What a strong effect. People where crying in the audience. I must live in a werid town. But hey that is what magi should do is hit the heart. It was a great show.

Michael
Message: Posted by: daffydoug (Jan 18, 2005 10:17PM)
[quote]
On 2005-01-17 12:52, reasons14 wrote:
His lottery routine is amazing. Anyone like his laser illusion??


[/quote]

The laser illusion blew me out of the water. Especially the part where his torso floats away from his body with no visible attachment. That knocked me for a loop.

[quote]
On 2005-01-17 13:35, The Mirror Image wrote:
I love both of them. The car got a standing ovation for over 5 mins. What a strong effect. People where crying in the audience. I must live in a werid town. But hey that is what magi should do is hit the heart. It was a great show.

Michael
[/quote]

Are you serious? He actually brought people to tears?
Message: Posted by: The Mirror Images (Jan 23, 2005 12:13PM)
Yes I am serious. I was wowed by that. That was true magic.

Michael
Message: Posted by: Dougini (Jan 23, 2005 05:55PM)
It's true! I know two people who were with me backstage wiping tears from our eyes during one of his Flying routines...it was that beautiful! Believe me, if you've ever seen him perform LIVE, the experience IS moving! He has a way with people onstage. To describe it would do it injustice. Another one that moved us close to tears, was the Fan...to see that done from backstage (the audience would NEVER see this) is to appreciate the talent that the rest of his crew posseses. People who are never seen or suspected. Yet the value they are to the show. They get my applause and admiration, as well as DC!

Doug
Message: Posted by: Frank Tougas (Jan 24, 2005 01:29PM)
Portal is a favorite of mine. The story line is emotional , the staging superb and there is so much interaction with the audience. My favorite straight illusion is walking through a mirror. The method may be familiar with magicians but the audience response is great.

Just a quick note on the Orson Wells trick, which I loved seeing it in person. There is a gentleman whose name escapes me that does a fantastic impression of Orson Wells and could easily put in David's name (not the original in the film clip) and make it sound genuine.

Those of you cartoon buffs may remember this actors voice from Pinky and the Brain.

Frank Tougas
Message: Posted by: Stephen Thompson (Jan 28, 2005 09:00AM)
Hi

I saw Copperfield many years ago and to my surprise got totally swept up in the experience. To this day, I can't really remember any of the illusions but rather I remember the greater effect, the overall illusion.

I recall the entire experience. I think much the same could be said about his career. In most laypeople's eyes he is a master illusionist (shall we say) but this is not on that back of one particular effect. It has more to do with the longevity of his fame, his marketing, how he has appeared only on the most highly rated TV programs and so on. What impresses us most is not the content but the context that he creates and I feel this is his greatest illusion.

Steve.
Message: Posted by: daffydoug (Jan 30, 2005 11:32AM)
[quote]
On 2005-01-23 18:55, Dougini wrote:
It's true! I know two people who were with me backstage wiping tears from our eyes during one of his Flying routines...it was that beautiful! Believe me, if you've ever seen him perform LIVE, the experience IS moving! He has a way with people onstage. To describe it would do it injustice. Another one that moved us close to tears, was the Fan...to see that done from backstage (the audience would NEVER see this) is to appreciate the talent that the rest of his crew posseses. People who are never seen or suspected. Yet the value they are to the show. They get my applause and admiration, as well as DC!

Doug
[/quote]

I did see the flying illusion live. It was extremely beautiful, although I don't now remember if my eyes were wet.

What impressed me the most about the show, believe it or not, was something simple. At the start of the show, or actually when everyone was still finding their seats he had smoke or mist crawling across the stage in a very mysterious manner, and I smelled incense throughout the theatre! It was very magical to me the way he established this magical atmosphere before the show even started. very nice touch, and very professional.

I forget much of the show, but believe it or not, that one simple part, which was not really a part of the show itself, but was rather a first impression type of thing still sticks in my mind's eye!

Go figure.

What do you have to comment on that part, Dougini?

[quote]
On 2005-01-28 10:00, Stephen Thompson wrote:
Hi

I saw Copperfield many years ago and to my surprise got totally swept up in the experience. To this day, I can't really remember any of the illusions but rather I remember the greater effect, the overall illusion.

I recall the entire experience. I think much the same could be said about his career. In most laypeople's eyes he is a master illusionist (shall we say) but this is not on that back of one particular effect. It has more to do with the longevity of his fame, his marketing, how he has appeared only on the most highly rated TV programs and so on. What impresses us most is not the content but the context that he creates and I feel this is his greatest illusion.

Steve.
[/quote]

would you agree that he is indeed a master marketer? (Even more so than a master magician.)
Message: Posted by: Dougini (Jan 30, 2005 12:56PM)
[quote]
On 2005-01-30 12:32, daffydoug wrote:
At the start of the show, or actually when everyone was still finding their seats he had smoke or mist crawling across the stage in a very mysterious manner, and I smelled incense throughout the theatre! It was very magical to me the way he established this magical atmosphere before the show even started. very nice touch, and very professional...>snip<...What do you have to comment on that part, Dougini?
[/quote]

Yes, I'd forgotten that. I was probably prepping for my part backstage at that point. Most likely, it was last minute instructions from JayStan (remember him?). I think that establishing a mystique, or implied atmosphere, is essential in creating the effect you want to have on an audience. I do remember the fog effect all through the show...the "incense smell" you describe is in the liquid fog solution, and is very pleasant, if I remember correctly...it's been a while...

Best,

Doug
Message: Posted by: daffydoug (Feb 1, 2005 06:18PM)
Who is JayStan?
Message: Posted by: Damien Steel (Feb 2, 2005 03:53AM)
For me his best was Flying. It is simply perfect. Do you know how many times he trained to do it?
Message: Posted by: daffydoug (Feb 2, 2005 10:32PM)
Probably a million!
Message: Posted by: Damien Steel (Feb 3, 2005 06:40AM)
Are there some famous name under his flying?
Message: Posted by: daffydoug (Feb 3, 2005 04:46PM)
Could you possibly rephrase that question?
Message: Posted by: Roberto Gee (Feb 3, 2005 06:03PM)
"Flying."

For me, anyway, it's the most perfectly realized illusion of the 20th Century.

And, yeah, I get a lump in my throat and wipe away tears every time I've seen it -- live or on TV.

Maybe it's not as "spectacular" as some of his other illusions ("Disappearing Statue of Liberty"), but "Flying" has an emotional core unlike anything I've seen before or since.

All, or most, of us have flown in dreams. When DC sits on the lip of the stage and talks about that boyhood dream, then stands and silently rises and begins to soar...my God!

We can joke all we like about DC's personal life, his "marketing" vs. "magician" skills, etc., etc.

But, to me, however you slice it, "Flying" is the single most perfectly developed, emotionally rewarding illusion ever performed.

Ever.

The pinnacle of "magic."

Seeing it is a privilege.
Message: Posted by: MCM (Feb 3, 2005 07:19PM)
How about the illusion he did on Catherine Bach many years ago? I know it is not new (did he ever show it on his tours?), but it did inspire some of us to magic (of course it could have been the assistant in this case).
Message: Posted by: Brian M. (Feb 3, 2005 07:58PM)
[/quote]

Well,, the end result was tremendous. What really threw me was the fact that Orson kept referring to David by name! And he was asking about the CARD specifically. What old Orson movie WAS that that had all these elements in it?
[/quote]

I seem to recall reading a review or write-up after the show aired (possibly by Gary Oulette in MAGIC) and it mentioning that Orson staged that skit for DAVID Bamberg.

My memory's a bit sketchy on this second part, but I believe the footage came into DC's possession from an auction lot that he bid on. It was in with a number of other items.

Brian
Message: Posted by: Daniel Faith (Feb 4, 2005 01:50AM)
I have to go with his Flying Illusion. Second to none.
Message: Posted by: Damien Steel (Feb 4, 2005 01:57AM)
Good trip..
Message: Posted by: Dougini (Feb 4, 2005 08:25AM)
[quote]
On 2005-02-01 19:18, daffydoug wrote:
Who is JayStan?
[/quote]

Those of you who follow Copperfield closely:

What happened to JayStan, his stage director? I don't see his name associated with DC any more. He WAS rather bad-tempered, and was instrumental in my "removal", after catching me doing tricks with a quarter to my fellow stagehands...no hard feelings, tho'...he was in the right, so to speak.

He reminded me of a drill sergeant. He had a VERY forceful way of making a point. Backstage, when he introduced himself to us "prop" people ("My name is JayStan...not Jay...not Stan...JayStan...if any of you call me Jay or Stan, I'll know you weren't listening, and if there is one thing I can't stand, it's people who DO NOT LISTEN!!")...I found that amusing...not a bad guy, mind you, just VERY forceful, and DC was quoted as saying that he did his job well...

Any input as to who runs the show now?

Doug
Message: Posted by: IllusionJack (Feb 4, 2005 01:06PM)
Hi Doug-

When I was on the tour recently, in 2002, the stage managers were O. Todd Moore (deck) and Ben Butner (PSM). Both of them were really very cool, always great to me, the lowly production assistant/merch guy. Rene Nadaeu was also an important guy - he did all the video and effects stuff and has been with DC more than 10 years. I heard mention of JayStan but I do not recall what they said he was doing now, or why he had gone.

Unfortunately, I heard DC staff say on more than one occasion they make a policy to not hire magicians. Which explains why your coin magic was your downfall, and my interest in magic is probably a big part of why I didn't stay with that tour also. Too bad, because it really was a lot of fun.

--Jack :pepsi:
Message: Posted by: oakenfold (Feb 4, 2005 01:50PM)
Dougini,
How long were you on tour with Copperfield? What was your job? It must have been a great experience. Do you remember a guy named "Fish" he was an assistant? I can remeber saying hi to him at a store 24 in Boston when they were in town because I recognized him from the previous year and he was very freaked out!
Message: Posted by: joespc (Feb 4, 2005 08:09PM)
My favorite is the laser illusion where he is cut in half. To see him lift his torso from his legs and then walk around was awesome.
Message: Posted by: SteveReel (Feb 4, 2005 08:31PM)
I guess I'm partial to levitations but I like both Flying and DCs Don Wayne Floating ball from one of his really early TV specials.
Message: Posted by: daffydoug (Feb 5, 2005 06:43AM)
[quote]
On 2005-02-04 21:09, joespc wrote:
My favorite is the laser illusion where he is cut in half. To see him lift his torso from his legs and then walk around was awesome.
[/quote]

The part that blew me away is when his torso started floating away from his lower body. that was the most awesome thing I have ever seen. It just blew me away.
Message: Posted by: pbg739 (Feb 5, 2005 12:23PM)
From the orient express special. He did the head mover. I had seen it live, and it is just awesome.
Message: Posted by: magicaldj1 (Feb 6, 2005 01:18PM)
My favorite Copperfield illusions are flying (saw it on T.V. and live) and the one with the singing ties (always cracks me up) that he did on the imploding building special. I also liked the self levitation he did on that special as well.
Message: Posted by: Brent McLeod (Feb 6, 2005 05:26PM)
Davids early illusions & show are what made him-

My Favourites-


-Vanishing Airplane- that had the world talking!!

-Orient Express-also very impressive at the time!

-Vanishing motorcycle after he rides up on it !!!!!

-Mini Playlets like- The Jewel Thief inside of store-Dances with Live Mannequin then turns into cardboard figures at end etc to great choreography & music
Message: Posted by: Ilan (Feb 8, 2005 04:56PM)
I really enjoyed the "snow storm" trick that was used to end David's Broadway show, and Grand Father's Ace trick. Both have so much class and really theatrical.
Message: Posted by: Mr NZ Magican (Feb 8, 2005 11:46PM)
SteveReel wrote

"I guess I'm partial to levitations but I like both Flying and DCs Don Wayne Floating ball from one of his really early TV specials."

I would have to agree with you I loved both of these.
Message: Posted by: SeanJohn (Feb 9, 2005 03:46AM)
My favorite is Flying. Also his latest illusions like Portal and Lotto Prediction etc. But when I start to think of his illusions I realize it's too hard to pick just few of them :D
Message: Posted by: WesRay (Feb 14, 2005 01:37PM)
[quote]
On 2005-02-04 21:09, joespc wrote:
My favorite is the laser illusion where he is cut in half. To see him lift his torso from his legs and then walk around was awesome.
[/quote]
See, when I watched Tornado of Fire and saw this illusion, I was extremely bummed because it looked to me like a very obvious and bad CGI effect (much like the "ghosts flying over the crowd" during the Barclay House illusion).

I dunno. Maybe I need to watch this one again.

Now, my overall favorite...Either Cocoon or Death Saw.
Message: Posted by: Jack Murray (Feb 14, 2005 01:41PM)
WesRay, the ghosts were "real" not CGI. I've seen it live!


Jack
Message: Posted by: WesRay (Feb 14, 2005 02:31PM)
[quote]
On 2005-02-14 14:41, Jack Murray wrote:
WesRay, the ghosts were "real" not CGI. I've seen it live!


Jack
[/quote]
See, on the TV special, he had a few ghosts fly from the top of the Barclay House, as if by wire...those definitely looked like cloth. 100% real, I admit. The ones that looked like they were CGI were the ones shown in the cut-away shots of the audience reacting to the ghosts above them. Looked way too staged, and you could see the audience members through the "ghosts".

Some are definitely real, but I contend that he used CGI for the remainder of those ghost shots. I hope to be proven wrong, though (as I don't like the idea of Copperfield resorting to cheap Hollywood FX in order to accomplish illusions). :)
Message: Posted by: Dougini (Feb 14, 2005 04:13PM)
[quote]
On 2005-02-04 14:06, IllusionJack wrote:
...Rene Nadaeu was also an important guy - he did all the video and effects stuff and has been with DC more than 10 years... [/quote]

Yes! Rene was a VERY good guy to work with. He was partly responsible for the "behind the scenes" work for "The Fan" illusion (if you remember), along with a few other goodies I care not mention here. Great you mentioned that, Jack!

"Fish" does not ring a bell with me...it's been awhile...I worked the show in "Props", building up the illusions after they come off the truck. Also helping with large rigging (when Flying was included in the show), in "tech" we tested the illusions and I helped a bit with "lighting tech" for Flying...plus, I was instrumental in the Load-outs, as DC is VERY precise in his truckloads.

Again, sadly, I miss it. 3 years in a row (each yearly appearance the crew called me at home to let me know when to show up). Makes me sick to think I blew it with a coin trick.

Doug
Message: Posted by: IllusionJack (Feb 15, 2005 06:09PM)
So Doug, you think that if DC came to Ft. Myers again, they wouldn't let you be included in the work call? Because of that coin trick incident?

--Jack :pepsi:
Message: Posted by: Dougini (Feb 15, 2005 06:22PM)
Abso-FREAKIN'-lutely!

They'd send me out the door so fast, it'd be like a DC illusion of its OWN! LOL!

Doug
Message: Posted by: IllusionJack (Feb 15, 2005 06:25PM)
Haha, well how do you know they'd remember you? After all, J Stan is gone and it's an all new crew now... and don't you think you'd just blend in with the other locals? that's really unfortunate. I got the same idea when I was there that they were not to keen on my having done my own small magic show in the past and stuff. There was a time or two that I would stop off to have a look at the illusion set pieces close up. That didn't go over too well either. Like I'm really there to steal the secrets! NOT! But, it's a valid concern, I suppose.

--Jack :pepsi:
Message: Posted by: momentsofmagic (Feb 15, 2005 09:11PM)
My favourite Copperfield routines include THE BLADE, THE EDGE and a routine that they did with a little boy (going back many years). The routine kinda reminds me of Hippity Hop Rabbits, there were two boxes about 4 feet apart seperated by a curtain, Webster was placed in a box and the child was distracted as Webster would move box to box. The audience saw that someone was HELPING Webster along and eventually that person shows themselves as they have to unlock one of the boxes to get Webster inside, eventually Webster disappears along with the person who was helping him! Very funny routine!

Cheers AL
Message: Posted by: Nick Wait (Feb 16, 2005 02:15PM)
For me it has got to be flying. The laser illusion freaks me out, such a shame Fearson decided to sell the rights to DC nad not sell them to the magic fratenity.
Nick
Message: Posted by: daffydoug (Feb 16, 2005 04:08PM)
[quote]
On 2005-02-15 22:11, momentsofmagic wrote:
My favourite Copperfield routines include THE BLADE, THE EDGE and a routine that they did with a little boy (going back many years). The routine kinda reminds me of Hippity Hop Rabbits, there were two boxes about 4 feet apart seperated by a curtain, Webster was placed in a box and the child was distracted as Webster would move box to box. The audience saw that someone was HELPING Webster along and eventually that person shows themselves as they have to unlock one of the boxes to get Webster inside, eventually Webster disappears along with the person who was helping him! Very funny routine!

Cheers AL

[/quote]

That was a hilarious illusion. The kid's name was Dave, as I recall! I still have it on tape somewhere. I'm not positive, but it may have been the Angie Dickinson special, but don't quote me on that.
Message: Posted by: Phil Thomas (Feb 16, 2005 08:15PM)
I think DC's biggest illusion was.................Claudia Schiffer! :lol:
Message: Posted by: R.T. (Feb 17, 2005 11:05PM)
I recently saw Copperfield, and people were definitly crying during Lotto. It is an amazing thing when he makes the car disappear.

I also love Death Saw
Message: Posted by: Corey K (Feb 20, 2005 06:53PM)
If it wasn't for Flying I wouldn't be doing magic. I was only 7 when I saw him perform it live and I can honestly say that it changed my life. It's a shame that he isn't performing it currently, although I can understand why. I would give just about anything to see him perform it live just one more time...it was breathtaking.
Message: Posted by: IllusionJack (Feb 21, 2005 12:00AM)
Corey-

I agree with you. DC's 'Flying' was one of the things that really sparked my interest in magic. That, and '13.' Those two are real standout illusions of his. Almost everything he does is absolutely amazing. I just don't think anyone compares, really. He's the only magician like him. The only one. Many others are just as good in their own categories... but in terms of being DC, he's the only one who has that style down pat that I've seen. Love him!

--Jack :pepsi:
Message: Posted by: drkptrs1975 (Apr 3, 2007 05:12PM)
I remember the Orsen Wells Illusion, I seen it live, it was my favorites.
Message: Posted by: Jazz (Apr 8, 2007 01:04AM)
I like the oldies. The upside down sawing of Catherine Back. His version of disembodied. His Dekolta Chair.
Message: Posted by: Bryan Gilles (Apr 8, 2007 01:18AM)
Greatest Illusion? Hmmmm... Making his career last this long!

Seriously... I've always liked his older stuff... I would have to say my favorite illusion would have to be the Elevator or Flying.

-Bryan
Message: Posted by: The Mac (Apr 8, 2007 06:34AM)
Elevator,cucoon,vertical ashrah,tides,bike2girls,snow,grafiti wall,the fan,ring to babyshoe,head mover..n some others...but those are the ones I enjoy watching.
Message: Posted by: lxx_33 (Apr 10, 2007 07:56AM)
Liked the camera trick (trick with a camera) and the gravity wall is a funny good one. Liked the saw version also, but now likes CA saw trick even better
Message: Posted by: Killed_CZ (Apr 11, 2007 03:49AM)
Cocon ... when seen live in Prague years ago ;)

His vanish at "Portal" right over my head :)

Voyeur for the smoothnes ;)

But there are many many others ;) already named :)
Message: Posted by: cardfreakhk (Apr 12, 2007 09:33AM)
My favourite illusion of DC is : One More Night.
A romantic story of himself.
Message: Posted by: phillipsje (Apr 12, 2007 09:58AM)
The Statue of Liberty Vanishing
The Orient Express Vanishing
Message: Posted by: MagicFingers (Apr 21, 2007 12:35PM)
[quote]
On 2005-01-03 23:31, rtgreen wrote:
Does anyone remember the routine where he reproduces all of the kids for the old nanny? To me that was DC's low point.
[/quote]

That was on the Magic of ABC Starring DC - the first TV special he ever did. I absolutely loved that illusion, really for the artistry and the twist at the end (although the story did drag on a bit!).
Message: Posted by: blackartman (Jun 26, 2007 08:29PM)
He has a lot of good ones. the one that literally got me was flying...but youtube is a big help :wow:
Message: Posted by: Allan Bright (Jun 27, 2007 02:57AM)
I love Flying and Lottery. Two great stories. I would have loved to see Laser live too...
Message: Posted by: incompletefaro (Jun 27, 2007 05:14AM)
Flying and Snow storm...
Message: Posted by: Marshall Thornside (Jun 27, 2007 10:21AM)
I don't have a favorite.
However, anything with the duck [i]is[/i] cute.
Message: Posted by: tnscot (Jun 29, 2007 08:58AM)
I have to go on record as saying that I believe his greatest illusion was getting married.
Message: Posted by: Dennis Michael (Jun 29, 2007 02:07PM)
I do love his DVD on flying.
Message: Posted by: Lash (Jul 2, 2007 09:48PM)
I would have to say his flying illusion. His teleportation comes in at a close second.
Message: Posted by: MarkHerrick (Jul 4, 2007 09:58AM)
For me ( my first post on this forum ) I can't really put my finger on THE best, however I do love his routine with the budgies where the girl's budgie has flown away and he produces a boy who in-turn produces a budgie.

Flying and Death Saw are probably my favourite illusions.
Message: Posted by: MarkHerrick (Jul 4, 2007 10:01AM)
For me ( my first post on this forum ) I can't really put my finger on THE best, however I do love his routine with the budgies where the girl's budgie has flown away and he produces a boy who in-turn produces a budgie.

Flying and Death Saw are probably my favourite illusions.
Message: Posted by: OENS (Jul 4, 2007 11:48AM)
As Mark above me I really like his flying illusion and the Death Saw :)
Message: Posted by: Kent Wong (Jul 4, 2007 11:56AM)
One of the first times I ever saw David Copperfield perform was on the Dinah Shore show. He performed one of the most elegant Dancing Cane routines I've ever seen. It was poetry in motion and perfectly set to the music he was using. When combined with his facial expressions and the pantomime, the effect was perfect.

Kent
Message: Posted by: Illucifer (Jul 20, 2007 08:50AM)
I'm going to have to say it was the padded body-suit.
Message: Posted by: Anatole (Jul 20, 2007 09:57PM)
The classiest routine I can recall is the Gershwin Dancing Cane/Levitation sequence from the fifth special. A lot of thought went into that, and I draw your attention to the following points:
1. It's more romantic I think to levitate a woman than to make yourself fly.
2. The dancing cane routine is short and sweet; and a lot of people probably missed this--The cane "reappears" in his hand at the end of the levitation. A nice touch!
3. Consider the parallel logic: Copperfield controls the dancing of the cane with his hand movements; then he uses hand movements to control the dancing and levitation of the girl
4. I've always liked the move that I call the "Copperfield kick" where he kicks the cane and makes it revolve. Check out the 1946 Cary Grant movie "Night and Day" and you'll see Jane Wyman do a similar move when she performs the dancing cane. I didn't even know the dancing cane went back that far. (BTW, Jane and the men dancing with her did a nice job with the dancing cane, too.)
5. The audience is literally stunned and gasps when the levitated girl starts moving toward them. A lot of magicians thought Copperfield was cheating and edited in a separate performance with a different levitation rig. Andre Kole wrote in GENII that he thought so himself until David explained the method to him.

The flying routine is mystifying and entertaining, but to my mind looked too much like the way Robin Williams flew in the movie "Hook."

----- Amado "Sonny" Narvaez