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Paul Daniels
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    (April 6, 1938-March 17, 2016)
    Born in South Bank, England, United Kingdom
    Birth name was Newton Edward Daniels
    Hosted ‘The Paul Daniels Magic Show’ on the BBC (1979-94)
    Also hosted the game shows ‘Odd One Out,’ ‘Every Second Counts’ and ‘Wipeout’ and the children’s show ‘Wizbit’
    He changed his first name to Paul because he thought it sounded ‘posher.’
    His catchphrase was, ‘You’ll like this…. Not a lot, but you’ll like it.’
    At 5’6, he was too short for standard magician’s props and had to have them custom made.
    For a Halloween special, he made it look as if he had been killed trying to replicate Harry Houdini’s escape from an iron maiden (1987).
    He claimed that he slept with at least 300 women after divorcing his first wife.
    His second wife, his assistant Debbie McGee, was 20 years younger than him.
    He and McGee appeared on several celebrity reality shows, including ‘X Factor: Battle of the Stars,’ ‘The Farm’ and ‘Wife Swap.’
    He tweeted that the slur ‘Paki’ is not racist and that people who complained about it were being ‘politically correct.’
    He was accused of ‘belittling’ victims of sexual abuse after he questioned whether all the accusers of Jimmy Savile were ‘for real.’
    He said of his stage shows, ‘Whereas most magicians at that time were doing cards, billiard balls, silk handkerchiefs and so on to waltzy classical music, I hit the stage in Lurex with rock’n’roll music going and lighting and lots of smoke and everything going mad. It took David Copperfield 35 years to catch up with me.’
    His TV show included regular segments where he exposed the confidence tricks of street hustlers and replicated the feats of alleged psychics.
    He was the first non-American to be named ‘Magician of the Year’ by the Academy of Magical Arts (1982).
    He recalled about his proposal to McGee, ‘I said: 'Look, I’m not very tall or good looking and I’m older than you and all that jazz, but the one thing I promise you is it’ll never be boring’
    He devised special effects for the musical ‘Phantom of the Opera.’
    He was injured by a thrown pizza during a taping of the puppet show ‘Sooty.’ (2011)
    He said David Blaine ‘is not very original.’

Credit: C. Fishel

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