The magician intends the underwater escape as a tribute to Houdini and in true Houdini fashion his publicist describes just two potential outcomes. “In If he fails to escape from the chilly waters of the Colorado River at the London Bridge in Lake Havasu City, he will drown!”
Criss Angel will be adorned in chains, shackles, and handcuffs before being wrapped in rope and dropped into the freezing river beneath the London Bridge at Lake Havasu City, Arizona. “Once submerged, he has only two choices: Escape or drown.”
Robin Leach tells readers “Criss has told me several times of Houdini being his inspiration, and this stunt re-creates one that Houdini mastered in England.”
Robin Leach also reports that Criss Angel “has been named Magician of the Year five times and most recently Magician of the Century.” Criss Angel’s web site mentions he was named Magician of the Year five times in a row but does not tell readers the group bestowing this honor. According to some on SAM Talk (Society of American Magicians ListServe) the honor came from the International Magicians Society and in 2005 the Academy of Magical Arts proclaimed him Magician of the Year as well. We could not find a citation for the Magician of the Century, however.
If he was named Magician of the Century for the current century, 2000 through 2010, the honor seems a bit premature.
On the other hand, if Criss Angel was the Magician of the Century for 1900 through 2000, it means he beat out such lesser magic names such as Thurston, Harry Blackstone and Harry Blackstone, Jr. , Harry Kellar, P.T. Selbit, David Copperfield, Doug Henning, Lance Burton, Penn & Teller, Kreskin, Chung Ling Soo, Ching Ling Foo, Siegfried & Roy, Mark Wilson, Walter Blaney, Bev Bergeron, Dai Vernon, Ace Gorham, Jay Marshall, Paul Daniels, Jade, Wayne Dobson, Mark Kalin and Jinger, Li’l Tom Hardy, Melinda Saxe, Orson Welles, P.C. Sorkar and P.C. Sorkar, Jr., Derren Brown, Becky Blaney, Theo Anneman, and of course the object of Criss Angel’s homage, Harry Houdini.
The Houdini escape episode will air as a one-hour special when the new season premieres in July.
The public is invited to attend the filming. If you would like to spend the night before or after the event, Criss Angel has worked his magic to secure special discount rates at the local Travel Lodge for just $69.99 per night. Be sure to mention “Criss Angel MindFreak” when making your reservation.
Of course, if you don’t mention Criss Angel Mind Freak, you can get a room with two queen beds or one king for five dollars less than the MindFreak discount; at least that’s what we found on the Travel Lodge site today (Saturday May 8th).