Poof! Here’s money! Don’t you wish you could just make money appear like the world’s magicians do? Well actually, they don’t make money appear. They get paid millions for floating, appearing, disappearing, making stuff appear, making stuff disappear, getting sawed in half, getting back together and displaying superhuman feats of endurance, among other amazing things.
So who are the richest magicians in the world who can seemingly make bags of money appear?
10. Hans Klok
This Dutch magician and illusionist has recently been inducted into the Inner Circle of The Magic Circle, an elite group of magical performers around the world. Prior to all this, Hans Klok started performing magic at 10 years old after being gifted with his first magic set, his first audience were his friends. By 14 he was already considered a champion conjurer and was soon taken to Las Vegas to perform in shows. He has also gone on to perform during the opening of the 2006 FIFA World Cup and London Fashion Week. He has also appeared in a number of Dutch movies and TV specials. A news report earlier placed his net worth at $145 million, however it was proven to be false. While no one has an exact estimate of his wealth it’s safe to assume he is one of the richest magicians in the world.
9. Derren Brown
Derren Brown is a popular British illusionist and mentalist and has appeared many times in the British television series Trick of the Mind and Trick or Treat. He also started his own series in 2000 called Derren Brown: Mind Control, and has also appeared on several television specials and stage productions. He has also written books on magic including Absolute Magic, Pure Effect, Tricks of the Mind, and Confessions of a Conjurer. Brown recently announced that he was gay during a 2007 interview and added he was blissfully happy in a relationship in another more recent interview in 2011. His net worth is estimated at $7.5 million.
8. David Blaine
When David Blaine wanted to entertain crowds all he had to do was take a walk down the street and perform for people. He did amazing things with anything at hand, no flashy clothes, or flashy props, although playing cards were always handy. Eventually he gained a following for his casual style and low-key demeanor. Later on he would move on to the bigger stunts and contacted the media beforehand so they could witness.
Not contented with magic tricks, Blaine has also showed he has superhuman endurance, standing inside a block of ice for three days, standing on top of a pole for two days and even living in a transparent box for 44 days without food and water. His net worth is estimated at $12 million.
7. Criss Angel
His real name is Christopher Nicholas Sarantakos, he is a famous street magician, illusionist and also the star and creator of the A&E Network show Criss Angel Mindfreak. He is known for his showmanship style, often inviting magic critics to his performances so they can see for themself that he is “the real deal”. He has also appeared in The Oprah Winfrey Show, WWE RAW, The Ellen DeGeneres Show, Larry King Live on CNN, The Megan Mullally Show and The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson. He says his passion for magic started after being shown a card trick by an aunt when he was seven years old. His net worth is estimated at $18 million.
6 & 5. Siegfried and Roy
Their show was the Las Vegas top draw, but that was until 2003 when Roy was injured by a tiger during a performance. Siegfried Fischbacher was born in Rosenheim, Bavaria, Austria and Roy Horn was born in Nordenham, Oldenburg, Germany. They started working together as a magic duo in 1959 on a German ocean liner. After their show caught on they were offered a spot in Las Vegas where they won for best show in 1972. They moved to work with The Mirage in 1990 for an annual guarantee of $57.5 million. By the time the show ended they had appeared together in an estimated 5,750 shows. They have a combined net worth of $120 million.
4 & 3. Penn Jillette and (Raymond) Teller
The two have been performing their magic and comedy routine together since the 1970’s. They have also appeared in their own show Penn and Teller: Bullshit which ran from 2003 until 2010. Penn Jillette, who was born in Massachusetts, is a graduate of the Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Clown College. He is an outspoken atheist and libertarian. Born in Pennsylvania, Raymond Teller is one of the few men on earth who is allowed to have a passport with only one name. No prize for guessing what that name is. He plays the silent partner in almost all their performances, and has rarely spoken onstage. The two were recently honored with their own stars at the Hollywood Walk of Fame, just a few steps away from that of another famous magician, Harry Houdini.
2. Lance Burton
Born in Columbia, Kentucky U.S. Lance Burton says he first became interested in magic when he was five years old and he was asked to be one of the volunteers at a magic show. He would later become a famous magician in his own right and has had many stage and TV appearances aside from writing, producing and directing his own show. In August 1994, Burton signed a 13-year contract with the Monte Carlo Resort and Casino in Las Vegas, his contract is still the longest contract given to any entertainer in Las Vegas history.
Shortly after, the resort began to build the $27-million Lance Burton Theater, a 1,274-seat room built to Burton’s specifications. His show finally opened on June 21, 1996 and was immediately hailed by Entertainment Today magazine as the no. 1 family magic act. Burton earned an estimated $110 million during the 13-year run. In July 1, 2009, Burton signed a six-year contract extension with the Monte Carlo Resort and Casino, his contract was to run until 2015 but it was ended earlier than planned and he performed for the last time in September 4, 2010 then retired after 31 years in the magic business.
1. David Copperfield
David Copperfield is famous for making the Statue of Liberty disappear and walking through the Great Wall of China, but his biggest feat yet is making a large fortune appear. How big? $800 million dollars for now, says Forbes, but he may be well on his way to making it to the billionaire list. Recognized as the most successful modern magician to date, he has sold an estimated 40 million tickets and has made and estimated $3 billion worth of gross tour revenues. His collection includes $200 million worth of magic memorabilia, including the largest collection of Harry Houdini artifacts in the world, not to mention 11 islands in the Bahamas that are worth over $100 million.