Thursday, May 17, 2007

Obligatory Harry Potter post

Okay, so I'm onto book four now- Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. This one will take longer to read, both because I have less time, and because it's a longer book.

I would say that, overall, my favourite is Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (the one I just finished). Although, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince does indeed run a close second.

I wrote an editorial over at Associated Content on the upcoming Deathly Hallows, and I'm starting to get back into the 'hype'- that sort of desperate fanaticism that makes me wanna go out and buy some goofy glasses and a pointy hat. From roughly midnight onwards on July 21st 2007, a silence will fall over homes sprinkled across a few whole continents, for the space of several hours (I'm not really sure how long book 7 is) as fans across the world read the final installment of this children's fantasy saga which has captured millions.

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Friday, April 27, 2007

Mandrake movie finally gets a director

(Via IGN) (of all things)

Having only recently discovered the wonders of Mandrake the Magician (thanks to Quinlan's) I guess I can't comment too much on this one, but the long-awaited film based on the popular comic strip finally has a Director.

Chuck Russell (Director of Scorpion King and The Mask) is set to Direct the film, which is being developed by Howard and Karen Baldwin.

The film is supposed to be a contemporary take on the mustached Magician who uses his skills in hypnotism and illusion to fight crime.

I think this film could do very well, and could easily capitalize on Hollywood's new interest in Magic (and it's continuing interest in comic books)- especially since it would be using such a recognizable character.

Now, is there anywhere I can go to catch up on my Mandrake? Any anthologies?

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Friday, April 13, 2007

Oldest Magic Book

(Via Magic Roadshow)

Check out a short article over on Magic Roadshow about a book recently rediscovered that was written by a friend of Leonardo DaVinci. The unpublished manuscript, titled De viribus quantitatis (On the Powers of Numbers) was written by a Franciscan monk, Luca Pacioli, sometime between 1496 and 1508. He and DaVinci apparently lived together.

The manuscript was stored in an archive at the University of Bologna, but was apparently recently discovered, and has been painstakingly transcribed and translated.

I have to say that I am rather impressed that DaVinci had ties to magic and magical methods... it just makes sense. I'd love to see a copy of the translation... although I'm not sure when it would actually be made available to the public.

Nonetheless, I'm reminded of this movie:

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Thursday, April 12, 2007

Countdown to the Deathly Hallows

Some of you may have noticed I put a widget in the bottom right of the blog counting down to the next Harry Potter book and movie... well, it's true. Despite my finer literary tastes, I also enjoy J.K. Rowling's humorous storytelling. I've read every book so far, and seen every movie, but I'm a little bit rusty, so I'm thinking I'm going to go back and re-read the previous books while I have the chance. I'll write some brief reviews and post them here with my personal reflections.

This upcoming novel will be the 7th and final book in the series, and should feature Harry's ultimate confrontation with Voldemort. Keep in mind that (as the story goes), J.K. Rowling has had the last chapter of this book written since roughly book one. Seriously. She has apparently had it locked in a safe-deposit box, after repeated break-ins by crazed fans.

It still doesn't cease to amaze me that BOTH the new book and movie are going to be out the same month- I figure it's going to be a tidal wave of Harry Potter fever, so I'm going to get started now.

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Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Harry Potter Cover Revealed

In an attempt to whet the appetites of crazed Harry Potter fans (like me), publishers have released both the child and adult covers for the upcoming Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, to be released July 21st (see countdown below).

I, for one, can't wait. Will the boy magician, er, WIZARD die in the last book?

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A New Twist on the Houdini story

Two of the places that renowned magician Harry Houdini called home- New York and Appleton- have both just broken the story that relatives of Houdini's widow adamantly oppose the exhumation and are now taking steps against it.

Descendants of Bess Houdini, John and Jeffrey Wood, have openly stated that they believe the exhumation is unnecessary and merely an attempt to boost book sales on the part of the authors.

"The Secret Life of Houdini" poses that Houdini was murdered by a group of psychics, The Spiritualists, due to his continuous debunking of their practices. After reading the book, Houdini's Great Nephew George Hardeen decided that the exhumation would be a good idea.

The paperwork for the exhumation is set either to be filed next week (according to WLNS) or today (according to the Albuquerque Tribune). I'll post a more in depth analysis later.

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