century magic for 'The Illusionist'
'‘The Illusionist’, a
romantic drama also starring Edward Norton, Paul Giamatti
and Jessica Biel.
In the movie, Norton plays a magician in turn-of-the-century
Vienna who falls in love with a woman well above his social
standing. When she becomes engaged to a prince, the magician
uses his powers to win her back. The script, based on the
short story ‘Eisenheim the Illusionist’ by Steven
Milhauser was written by Neil Burger who also directed the
Dynamic FX supplied a team of magic consultants for the
film which was shot in Prague. They began work earlier this
year, before filming, with elaborate plans to authentically
recreate genuine 19th century magic and illusions.
James Freedman explains, “As well as recreating historic
methods for the magic in the film, we also invented some
brand new illusions that though true to the period, have
never been performed before. Part of my role was to teach
Edward Norton (pictured right) and Aaron Johnson sleight
of hand and magic skills and over the months they both
became very competent magicians.”