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David Copperfield Forced To Reveal Magic Trick In Las Vegas Court
British tourist Gavin Cox fell while participating in one of David Copperfield's magic tricks. Now, he's suing him in court.
A magician never reveals his tricks — unless he's compelled to by a court of law.
After a man suffered a dislocated shoulder and brain injury while participating in one of David Copperfield’s magic tricks at the MGM in Las Vegas in 2013, a court says the famed magician must reveal the “magic” behind the trick.
British tourist Gavin Cox, 58 filed a negligence lawsuit against the magician, claiming that he has suffered chronic pain since he participated in Copperfield’s "Lucky #13" trick five years ago.
The secret behind that trick was revealed in court on Tuesday by his executive producer. Here's the method behind the magic:
During the trick, done regularly by the 61-year-old magician, Copperfield selects 13 participants and puts them in a suspended cage on the stage. A curtain drapes to cover the cage. A few moments later, the curtain is drawn to reveal that the 13 people are no longer on stage. Instead, they are at the back of the audience. What happens is the 13 people are rushed through passageways in the MGM building, which allows them to exit and then re-enter the theater.
A judged denied Copperfield's lawyers' bids to hold close proceedings closed to public in an attempt to keep the tricks' secrets sacred, according to the Associated Press.
Cox said he has spent more than $400,000 on medical bills as a result, according to the Associated Press.
Cox’s lawyer, Benedict Morelli slipped and fell during the illusion, according to KSNV in Las Vegas. He was supposed to be celebrating his birthday. During his opening statements, Morelli said Cox, a chef, was told “'Stand up, come with me.' And Mr. Cox describes it as a rabbit coming out of a rabbit hole."
He called the behind-the-scenes actions of the trick chaotic, dark and full of dust and construction debris. Copperfield, however, claimed the path was clear. Jerry Popovich, MGM Grand's attorney, claimed that Cox missed a step, causing his fall, the Associated Press reported.
Morelli said that "there was a duty by the defendants to provide a safe environment to the audience participants".
Popovich argued that audience members were asked if they were healthy enough to participate in any magic trick.
Copperfield’s lawyer, Elaine Fresch said that over 55,000 people who have participated in the trick over the last ten years. She said that only Cox had reported being hurt while participating, according to the Las Vegas Review-Journal.
The trial picks up again on Tuesday in Las Vegas's Clark County District Court.
[Photo: Getty Images]