Jadugar Anand welcomes Mohanlal backing out

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Chennai, Apr 24 (UNI) Eminent magician Jadugar Anand today termed the ''fire escape'' as a dangerous act and said film star Mohanlal had rightly opted out of the ''burning illusion'' he had planned to perform under the guidance of magician Gopinath Muthukad.

Reacting to Mohanlal's decision, Mr Anand, in a statement here, said ''fire escape'' prima facie might look simple, but only a magician would understand the dangers involved in the act. Some of the magicians have suffered severe burns, while others suffered serious spinal injuries.

''Ethically speaking, such acts of magic should not be experimented with,'' he warned.

''Genuine commendations to Superstar Mohanlal who realised that these acts can't be managed through a stunt double. Nor will this be done in the safety of a film set, where retakes can be had till the perfect shot is achieved,'' he said.

An artist of Mohanlal's calibre had shown immense compassion towards his fans, who would rather have his talents reserved for the silver screen than expose him to uncalculated risks, Mr Anand said.

The death of a Kerala magician, who performed the fire escape on December 29, 2000, had been the biggest blow to aspiring performers, he said.

However, his son Akash had performed the 'Great Fire Escape' as many as nine times. He entered the Guinness Book of World Records after performing the act for the record ninth time here on March 30 in full public view. Thanks to his expertise and supreme physical fitness, Akash could escape with just a few scratches.

Fire escape was a magical act for spectators, but it was a performance that peaks the combination of magical dexterity, presence of mind, physical fitness and honesty of risks.

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