Monday, July 28, 2014

Houdini gives Wanda Hawley a lift

After several days of enjoying images of Adrien Brody as Houdini, let's get back to the real thing. For that I'm going to send you over to Joe Notaro's Harry Houdini Circumstantial Evidence for this fantastic photo of Houdini levitating actress Wanda Hawley at the Famous Players-Lasky studio in Hollywood.

This is the only photo I've ever seen of Houdini performing a levitation, and it's always great to see him playing the role of traditional magician. This magical discovery of Joe's comes from The Moving Picture World, June 14, 1919.

For more on Houdini and the levitation, check out my post from 2012: Houdini's lost levitation.


  1. Did Harry float her up from the ground?

    If not, then its technically a "Suspension" :-)

    ...but, what a Fantastic find!

    1. Ah, thanks for the clarification, Joe. Don't know exactly the technique he's using here, or if it's just a completely posed shot.

  2. Houdini probably stayed away from this effect because he and Kellar were close friends. Kellar had passed it on to Thurston who used it in his shows. It would have looked bad for Harry to include it in his performances.

    But then, Kellar had swiped this trick from J.N. Maskelyne...