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Orson Welles

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Orson Welles
BornGeorge Orson Welles
May 6, 1915
Kenosha, Wisconsin
DiedOctober 10, 1985 (age 70)
Los Angeles, California,

Orson Welles (May 6, 1915 – October 10, 1985) was an American actor, director, writer and producer who worked extensively in theater, radio and film. He was an accomplished magician, starring in troop variety spectacles in the war years. Welles started his Mercury Wonder Show, traveling to Armed Forces camps and performing magic tricks and doing comedy.

Welles had a cameo in the 1944 wartime salute Follow the Boys, in which he performed his Mercury Wonder Show magic act and sawed Marlene Dietrich in half after Columbia Pictures head Harry Cohn refused to allow Hayworth to perform.

Jim Steinmeyer was one of Orson Welles' closest friends during the last several years of his life. Another magician who knew Welles around the same time was Mike Caveney.

Orson was on the cover of Magic Manuscript Issue 3 (October / November 1983).

The film that Welles was doing, The Magic Show, was unfinished at the time of his death in 1985.

Two tricks and a bag by Orson Welles was published in The Phoenix:

  • Fruit Cup, page 250, No. 61, 26 May 1944
  • The Town Skryer, page 413, No. 103, 4 April 1946
  • Subway Intrance, page 528, No. 131, 1 August 1947


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