Source: The Hollywood Reporter
Ben Berman’s “The Amazing Johnathan Documentary,” about an ailing magician’s return to the stage was never intended as a nose-thumbing to the documentary form.
In fact, as Berman drove out to Las Vegas in 2017, seeking to gather material for a short film about illusionist John Szeles — The Amazing Johnathan in 2014 had declared in front of a live audience that he had cardiomyopathy and a year to live — there wasn’t much of a plan at all.
Berman saw an opportunity to document the return of a still alive-and-kicking Szeles announcing that he was coming out of retirement while mixing in interviews from comedy and magic act peers including Eric Andre, Penn Jillette, and Criss Angel.
As far as documentaries go, this was all pretty standard stuff. Then — as Berman’s film lays out in glorious detail — everything went spectacularly wrong.
Read the story at The Hollywood Reporter.
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