On Friday, Oct 27th, the news broke that David Copperfield has plans to make the MOON disappear in February 2024. My Facebook feed lit up like a Christmas tree. I've never seen anything like it. I want to delve into this, but first a little history.
You may remember the time, when annual David Copperfield Specials were the highlight of the magic year. Each year promised new magic, new illusions, and often some new spectacular effect. Some years were better than others obviously. But, not one special went by without some stand out piece, sometimes several.
The Statue of Liberty Special was a milestone. Not just being able to make it vanish, but the symbolism that was behind it. If you don't know, there is a story behind this vanish. During the planning stages, David and his manager went to visit famed movie director Frank Capra. They thought he might have a unique take on the presentation of the vanish. And sure enough he did. In the book, Smoke & Mirrors by Rick Marcelli, he shares what happened. Frank Capra heard what Copperfield had in mind, then went into deep thought. A few minutes later, he slammed his hand down on the table! He had it! He told David, "YOU must FAIL at this illusion. You must give it your all, but in the end you must fail. Becuase even the greatest magician of all time cannot make LIBERTY vanish from America!, Capra said. Whoa. Rick Marcelli thought the idea was brilliant. I frankly had goose bumps the first time I read it. David wanted nothing to do with it. He HAD to make the Statue vanish. And in his defense, when you say you're going to do something and then you don't that gives critics an opportunity to eat you alive. I still think it would have been brilliant.
I only bring up this Statue of Liberty though becuase around that time, I had first heard of the Vanishing Moon idea. I believe it was an Andre Kole idea. For the life of me, I cannot locate the quote. I've looked high and low and I know it was written up in a book. But also, David Copperfield did a piece on Oprah, back in the day and he mentioned on her show that his next big thing would be the MOON.
But if you look even closer, you'll see the Moon crop up often in the world of David Copperfield. In 1992, during the Flying Special, David did one of his interactive tricks. (remember when he was THE ONLY ONLY doing those?)
His interactive trick dealt with destinations and the final outcome was that you would end up on the MOON!
Then there was David's version of the Water Levitation. In the background, a big glowing moon! It perfectly fit the magic happening in front of it.
Fast forward to one of the most unique David Copperfield Specials, the one that was shot in Memphis TN in the round. There was a routine that he talked about the Moon and high tide and low tide. It culminated with the producttion of a glass filled with LIFE! Watch the video below.
At this same time, in David's touring show, he did an interactive routine with the entire audience. Everyone was given a sheet of paper that could be torn into rectangles. One of those rectangles had an image of the moon, I believe all the others were blank. Despite mixing and shuffling, the majority of the audience ended up with the Moon card as their chosen image.
Clearly this fascination with making the moon vanish has stuck with David all these years. I heard that they had created multiple ways to do the effect. One would expect no less from Copperfield. Speculation on the internet, at least some of it leans towards it being like the Statue of Liberty in methodology. I disagree. Many of the mega trick concepts have been exposed on youtube, both magics biggest friend and enemy. I believe the reason we have no seen this trick is David and his team were looking for something that had never been done before. That's my belief at least. And beyond that I'm not going to waste my time trying to think about 'how it was done' before they even do it. I sincerely hope it fools the hell out of me! If it's that strong, I don't want to know!!!
David Copperfield, back in the day was known for this type of thing. In case you're not familiar, here are a few things he did: Levitated a Ferrari On Stage, Made a Lear Jet Vanish while surrounded, Caused The Statue of Liberty to Vanish, Walked Through the Great Wall of China, Made the Orient express train car weightless and then disappear, Made a Large Boat Vanish and Reappear in the Bermuda Triangle, He Flew on stage, not only solo but with a spectator in his arms as well. I'd say the one mis-step was the Tornado of Fire, which was more a David Blaine sort of stunt. There is no need to go that route when you're already KING.
If I might quote a famous line from a movie, it's from Star Trek the Wrath of Kahn. The dialog is between Spock and Kirk, Spock says, "If I might be so bold, it was a mistake for you to accept promotion, commanding a starship is your first best destiny, anything else is a waste of material." I feel this way about David Copperfield, this type of thing, the Moon Vanish, THIS stuff is your first best destiny. It's what we all loved, it's what put you on the map. It's what we expected from you. That isn't say that David Copperfield isn't talented in other areas. OMG, he's brilliant in so many ways, and surrounds himself with super talented people. But lets face it. We've been waiting for this return. It's the most exciting thing in the world of magic that I can think of in ages.
Remember that expression, "Shoot for The Moon, even if you miss you'll land among the stars!"Like NASA in the 1960s , for David Copperfield, it's always been about The Moon. Mark Your Calendars!