David Copperfield (born David Seth Kotkin; September 16, 1956) is an Emmy Award-winning American illusionist, and was described by Forbes as the most commercially successful magician in history. Copperfield's network specials have been nominated for 38 Emmy Awards and won a total of 21 Emmys. Best known for his combination of storytelling and illusion, Copperfield’s career ofover 30 years has earned him 11 Guinness World Records, a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, a knighthood by the French government, and he was named a Living Legend by the US Library of Congress. Notable illusions created and performed by David Copperfield include vanishing the Statue of Liberty, walking through the Great Wall of China, escaping from a locked safe inside an imploding building, andflying through the air night after night in his Broadway show. Copperfield has so far sold 40 million tickets and grossed over $3 billion, which is more than any other solo entertainer in history, including Madonna, Michael Jackson and Lady Gaga He currently performs over 500 shows a year. When not performing, he's creating experiences for his chain of 11 islands in the Bahamas - Musha Cay andthe Islands of Copperfield Bay, which has just completed a $35 million renovation under Copperfield's supervision.
International Museum and Library of the Conjuring Arts
Copperfield owns the International Museum and Library of the Conjuring Arts, which houses the world's largest collection of historically significant magic memorabilia, books, and artifacts. Begun in 1991 when Copperfieldpurchased the Mullholland Library of Conjuring and the Allied Arts, which contained the world's largest collection of Houdini memorabilia, the museum comprises approximately 80,000 items of magic memorabilia, including Houdini's Water Torture Cabinet and his Metamorphosis Trunk, Orson Welles' Buzz Saw Illusion and automata created by Robert-Houdin.
The museum is not open to the public; tours arereserved for "colleagues, fellow magicians, and serious collectors". Located in a warehouse at Copperfield's headquarters in Las Vegas, the museum is entered via a secret door in what was described by actor Hugh Jackman as a "sex shop" and by Forbes as a "mail-order lingerie warehouse". "'It doesn't need to be secret, it needs to be respected,' he said.’If a scholar or journalist needs a piece of magichistory, it's there.'"
Musha Cay and the Islands of Copperfield Bay
In 2006 Copperfield bought eleven Bahamian islands called Musha Cay. Re-named "The Islands of Copperfield Bay," the islands are a private resort. Guests have reportedly included Oprah Winfrey and John Travolta, and Google co-founder Sergey Brin was married there.
"Magic Underground" restaurant
David Copperfield's MagicUnderground was planned to be a restaurant based on Copperfield's magic. There was a sign on Hollywood Boulevard during the late 90s indicating the restaurant was coming soon. Signs were also located around Pleasure Island and signs outside Disney-MGM Studios. A Magic Underground restaurant was also going to open in New York's Times Square. Plans also included eventual expansion into Disneyland inAnaheim, California, as well as Paris and Tokyo. The restaurants were to have magic props and other items on the walls of the restaurants while magicians would go around to tables doing sleight of hand tricks. There was also to be a larger stage for larger stunts. The restaurant in Times Square was 85 percent completed, but, amid disputes between the creative team and the financial team, and enormouscost overruns, finances dried up from the investors, so the project was cancelled, and Disney cancelled the lease. Copperfield was not an investor in the project; the investors reportedly lost $34 million on the project, and subcontractors placed $15 million in liens.
Accidents and injuries
On March 11, 1984, while rehearsing an illusion called "Escape from Death" where he was shackled and...