When a man participated in one of David Copperfield’s shows in Las Vegas, he slipped, fell and dislocated a shoulder and received a brain injury. When the case made it to court, the judge told Copperfield he had no choice but to divulge the ‘wizardry.’

Gavin Cox, 58 and from Britain, filed a lawsuit against Copperfield for experiencing constant pain since participating in Copperfield’s trick.

The Method

Here’s how the illusion works. Copperfield, 61, picks 13 participants from the audience and places them in an enclosure suspended over the stage. A veil is lowered over the cage then lifted to show the 13 persons are no longer there. Instead, they appear at the rear of the auditorium.

The 13 individuals are hurried through passageways in the MGM theater, and they exist and re-enter the building.

The illusion’s secret secrets were revealed when a judge denied Copperfield’s attorney’s request to close the proceedings.


Cox claimed to have spent over $400,000 on health care bills from a slip-and-fall he had during the trick. Cox had gone, with family, to the show to celebrate his birthday. Instead, Cox and twelve others were led thru chaotic tunnels under the theater which were dark, full of dust and packed with construction debris. Copperfield’s lawyers claimed the pathway was open and clear and Cox skipped a step and caused his fall.

Copperfield’s attorney, Elaine Fresch, claimed over 55,000 persons had joined in the illusion during the last ten years and Cox was the only one who claimed to be injured while joining the act.


Copperfield began performing when he was ten as “Davino the Boy Magician.” When he was 12, he became the youngest member of the Society of American Magicians. As Copperfield got older, he found magic as a way to meet women and is now worth about $900 million and is the wealthiest magician on the planet according to Forbes.

The trial, which began on April 13, 2018, is expected to last about a week according to The Daily News.