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"Houdini": History greenlights miniseries

Melissa Hayer Published: August 19, 2013
Adrien Brody - Photo by Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP
Adrien Brody - Photo by Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP

History has announced it has greenlit a new four-hour scripted miniseries, “Houdini,” scheduled to start production this fall.

Adrien Brody (“The Pianist”) stars as the master magician and Kristen Connolly (“House of Cards”) plays his wife Bess.

Details on “Houdini,” provided by History, are as follows:

The miniseries will trace the arc of Houdini’s life from desperate poverty to worldwide fame and will be co-produced for History by Lionsgate and A+E Studios.

Before David Blaine and David Copperfield, there was one man whose name was synonymous with being the master of illusion and escape ­ Harry Houdini. “Houdini” follows the man behind the magic as he finds fame, engages in espionage, battles spiritualists and encounters the greatest names of the era, from U.S. presidents to Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and Grigori Rasputin.  The drama will chronicle the life of a man who can defy death through his stunts, his visions and his mastery of illusion.

“Since my childhood, when I dreamed of being a great magician, Harry Houdini has been one of my heroes,” said Adrien Brody. “His bravery and obsessive determination still fascinate me. Houdini mastered the art of escape ­ not only from physical chains, but from poverty and the social constraints of a humble immigrant origin. His life story appeals to the universal longing for acceptance with which we all can identify. To portray him is beyond an honor.”

Gerald W. Abrams (Nuremberg, Family of Spies) and Andras Hamori (Sunshine) will serve as executive producers of “Houdini.” Academy Award-nominated Nicholas Meyer (The Seven-Per-Cent Solution) is writer and Academy Award-nominated director Uli Edel (The Baader Meinhof Complex, Hotel Adlon) will helm “Houdini.” Academy Award-winning veteran Patrizia von Brandenstein (Amadeus) is production designer and Karl Walter Lindenlaub, whose work ranges from American blockbusters (Independence Day) to award-winning art house movies (Black Book) is cinematographer. Dirk Hoogstra and Julian P. Hobbs are Executives in Charge of Production for History.

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