Finally a full length movie about an illusionist that has some real substance! This is a TRUE STORY!
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Based on his true story, Walking Through Fires, is a captivating tale of a chain of events surrounding renowned master of illusion, Mark O’Brien. In 1999 O’Brien was closing in on achieving his dream of opening a magic attraction in the theme park Mecca of Orlando, Florida. Then two suspicious fires in two warehouses on his property , five days apart, crippled his production company. Investigators declared it arson. O’Brien had no insurance. Pressure mounted as he rebuilt his show company. Then he learns that a fire lieutenant was lying to him concerning the details of the fire investigation days after Mark discovers that a similar magic-themed attraction was under construction. The attraction strangely resembled what was in the details of his business plan.
Determined to find out the truth about his fires, he hires two private investigators to get to the bottom of things. They are arrested on outrageous charges as they begin to discover what they concluded was a “major cover-up “.
Mark was tortured by what he knows was a crime against him and involved corrupt or incompetent law enforcement, corruption ,crooked politics and a conspiracy. O’Brien appeals to Federal elected officials but the FBI is occupied by the crisis of September 11th and the emerging War on Terrorism. Five years pass and O’Brien temporarily takes a new and successful career path outside of the illusion show business. It lands him in Jacksonville, Florida. He is still troubled by the fires ,the results of his investigation, and the lack of justice.
He created a stage illusion show about his story that played for a week in Jacksonville and it became the basis for this film.
In the film O’Brien tells his story to his life-long friend, “Dave”, played by television star Bill Kirchenbauer. Dave, hasn’t seen his childhood friend for ten years. He visits O’Brien on a business trip to catch up and reminisce about old times. Here, he learns of the “David vs. Goliath”. It is a story about the way things are vs. the way things should be, a story of right vs. wrong, weak vs. strong, and the stark reality of the human condition vs. the aspirations of the individual in the world of show business.
During his brief visit, Dave sees O’Brien’s pain as Mark strives to find some peace and happiness by determining what is really important in his life as he is faced with what has become his reality.
Jim Steinmeyer acknowledges Mark’s creativity in Steinmeyer’s book and plans to Modern Art. The illusion has become one of the most popular illusions in history. Mark’s method for The Split Image is totally different from Modern Art and a baffler even for illusionists in-the-know. The photo is not doctored and is precisely what you see when you see the illusion. No mirrors are used. No, the Kevin James method is not used. When the woman is divided, both the front and back doors to the cabinet are opened. Mark “blew-them-away” at The Magic Castle with this illusion when he appeared there.