ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: USA: DAVID BLAINE

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English/Nat
NEW YORK , APRIL 5 1999

GOING UNDERGROUND WITH NEW YORK’S NEW HOUDINI

New York City was abuzz early Monday morning as news of a 25 year-old magician buried himself alive in an attempt to finish what master of magic, HARRY HOUDINI started.

Brooklyn born and bred DAVID BLAINE, known for levitating off the ground and once dating FIONA APPLE, was buried in a clear plastic coffin without food and just enough water to survive for seven days.

At 10 am Monday morning on the site of DONALD TRUMP’s new building on the Upper West side, David was lowered into a gravesite and his coffin was covered with clear plexiglass and topped off with a 4000 gallon water tank so that passers-by could view him at any hour of the day for the next seven days. Donald, who is not known for missing the chance for any publicity, was on hand for the event.

Blaine’s latest attempt to fascinate is not his first. In 1997, ABC aired his first special, “Street Magic” and his new show “Magic Man” will air on the network April 14th. In both shows, Blaine uses the same technique, a type of in-your face magic show as he approaches ordinary people on the street to perform various magic tricks. In his new show, he will also travel to the Amazon to spend time with a native tribe and will work with Israeli-born mentalist Uri Geller to create some psychic effects.

As with any young success, Blaine’s has been received with a bit of criticism. After high school, he briefly studied acting and began performing magic in the street. He also ran around with a posse of the highest celebrity — Leonardo DiCaprio and Tobey Maguire. Today, however, he wishes to disassociate himself with Leo and concentrate on his upcoming challenges like the burial and the show. He has, however, accepted the attention of Robert DeNiro — who has optioned his life story for his film company — Tribeca Films.

David will rouse himself every day at noon, when the sun is directly overhead, so that he may wave to friends and family. A crane will be on hand around clock, ready to lift the plexiglass water tank should anything go wrong.

For more information contact Jill Fritzo at PMK in New York (212) 582-1111.

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