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Houdini was commuting daily between the Rolfe studios in Yonkers, where he was filming The Master Mystery, and Manhattan, where he was appearing in the Hippodrome revue show, Everything. While it seems somewhat improbable that Houdini at age 44 would be mistaken for a juvenile, his dye job did shave years off his appearance, as you can see below. By the way, "slacker" back then meant a draft dodger.
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Houdini continued to dye his hair for the remainder of his life. He never concealed this fact. On his 1919 passport application he wrote for hair color: "dyed black." But having left movies behind, he did again allow his sideburns to go white during his final years touring with his 3 Shows in One.