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Regular user
151 Posts

Profile of AmazingA
Does it bother anyone else that the T-Tip was exposed in the recent Ben Stiller film "Night at the Museum"? I guess it wasn't really a big deal, but they definitely didn't worry about choosing another effect, or perhaps making up a method for exposing the trick. Why do they continue to do this in movies?
DP the Great
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Regular user
CC, Texas
198 Posts

Profile of DP the Great
Yeah, I saw it yesterday. He pulled out the silk, and I was instantly afraid of the exposed TT. It is always exposed. Bah. That is why I use the thumb tip for everything but silks, because it is too widely known. At first I was mad, but then again, it was used as a joke, and at least they picked a trick that has been exposed often in the past. I don't know what to think of it. I know my buds are going to tease me about it. But I suppose there is nothing I can do about it.

I also had an idea. He did mention Copperfield in the beginning of the movie. I wonder that if the producers of the movie had to contact Copperfield for permission to use his name, if they also asked him for trick ideas, where the TT may have come from. Just a though.

D. P. the Great
Tim Ellis
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Melbourne, Australia
1224 Posts

Profile of Tim Ellis
A friend of mine took a girl out to see "Night At The Museum". He had been impressing her over dinner with a few tricks, with the vanishing silk leaving a particularly strong impression.

As they sat in the cinema and the exposure scene came on, he looked across at her and the look she gave him in return was impossible to describe. Suffice to say that her estimation of him as a magician dropped considerably at that point.
Brian Tanner
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Veteran user
Fresno, CA
306 Posts

Profile of Brian Tanner
I hope that I don't come off as a jerk for saying goes. There has been more exposure for the thumbtip to lay audiences by "magicians" improper handling of the device than in any movie.

Think about it. There must be an awful lot of mishandling and misuse of this tool for it to wind up as a joke in a movie.

The thumbtip is a wonderful device that will allow us to perform miracles. We only need to practice and perfect our presentations utilizing it. Just as we would our cards, silks, cups and balls, etc....etc...
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Regular user
San Bernardino, CA
118 Posts

Profile of docmagik
Tim, that's the saddest thing I've heard today.

If Senator Obama can apologize to a journalist for cutting in on his action, I think the folks behind "Night at the Museum" should apologize to your friend.
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Inner circle
The Holy City of East Orange, NJ
6438 Posts

Profile of Spellbinder
So now you have to say, "Nothing in my hands, nothing up my sleeves, and nothing on my thumbs," BEFORE you bring out the tip and use it anyway.
Professor Spellbinder

Professor Emeritus at the Turkey Buzzard Academy of Magik, Witchcraft and Wizardry

Publisher of The Wizards' Journals
Tim Ellis
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Melbourne, Australia
1224 Posts

Profile of Tim Ellis
Many, many years ago when audiences became aware that magicians used "mirrors and trapdoors" for some tricks, a lot of the "magic" disappeared from the art.

Magicians would saw someone in half. "Mirrors and trapdoors!"

Magicians would make someone disappear. "Mirrors and trapdoors!"

Magicians would make someone levitate. "Mirrors and trapdoors!"

I hear people arguing that the use of the thumbtip has only been exposed in relation to the the silk vanish.

But I do wonder how many laypeople, after seeing the exposure on "Night at the Museum", will assume that any small objects that disappear in the magician's hand went into "that plastic thumb". Will it become the "Mirrors and trapdoors!" of the close-up magician?

I just can't help but think that yet another part of the magic has been chipped away.
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Atlanta, GA
182 Posts

Profile of mydogripper
Remeber the masked magician
2011 Greater Atlanta Magician of the Year
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Inner circle
1848 Posts

Profile of RJE
I got to see the movie last night on a red eye flight, and personally, I don't think we have too much to worry about.

Yup, the silk was visible sticking out. Yup, the Mongol grapped the TT away. However, it wasn't clear exactly what he grabbed. I think the average layperson will not comprehend exactly what took place there. In fact, it might be more of an inside joke for us magicians.

I believe, and this is only my opinion, that this brief movie gag, will have little or no affect on our craft.

All the best,

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Special user
Myrtle Beach, SC
639 Posts

Profile of WagsterMagic
I was upset by it but, it has blown over. I haven't gotten any comments by it in the public.

The Wagsters: World Class Magic & Illusion
Mark Fifield
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New user
Barrie, On
51 Posts

Profile of Mark Fifield
I asked my sister who saw the movie about 2 weeks ago if she saw anything when Ben Stiller vanished the silk and she didn't even remember him vanishing a silk. (She's 17 so it's not like she's 7.)
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987 Posts

Profile of FunTimeAl
I've never seen the movie. However, I got busted at my restaurant job by a girl (age 9-11???) while doing a silk vanish. She said, "You used one of those fake thumbs like Night at the Museum!"

I looked perplexed (which I was, since I hadn't seen the movie), said, "no I didn't, I hid it in my armpit while you were looking at my other hand", produced the silk from my armpit...which still got a great response from her and the parents, and then asked her about the movie.

Point being, even though my gimmick was blown, I applied the trick well and gave the table a good show.

I'm still blown away at a pass during an abitious card routine if the magician is doing it well...and I'm very well aware of what's going on!

I was ready to explode when I walked away from the table, and was wishing that I had taken R. Paul Wilson's advice on his Restaurant DVD: "Have a pull ready if anyone calls you out on having a TT".

However, I still use the silk and TT at tables. I guess it's the old addage, not what ya do, but how you do it.
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Inner circle
Montreal, Quebec, Canada
2133 Posts

Profile of jlevey
For more than 30 years, I have performed the vanish of a silk or the color change of a silk, using a Johnson dye tupe. They can burn your thumbs all they want (even magicians) and they will never see the thumb tip... when you use the dye tube.

Try it, you may like it!

Max & Maxine Entertainment
Magicians with a touch of comedy!
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Special user
In Your Mind, Ky, USA
722 Posts

Profile of ibm_usa
You can still use TT for silk vanishes. People know that TT's exist but, instead of forcing the silk in the you know what like most people do, you should just naturally poke the silk into the you know what and casually steal the gimmick in a natural way. IT is also important to keep your hands moving so they won't see anything. You just got to be ahead of your game.
IF it sounded like I was exposing, no, I was not I was just giving some advice on how to proporally use the you know what so that you can vanish silks without worry.
"You may think that i only talk of things from the past, you know, history, well magic is history"

-Guy Jarrett

"Curiosity isn't a sin Harry, but it should be exorcised with great caution."

-Albus Dumbledore (Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire)
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