Heather & I were on vacation in Las Vegas the last few days, and also among the highlights was seeing the Penn & Teller magic present at The Rio. In reality I was picked from the audience to help through the incredibly initially trick they perdeveloped. Here’s a rundown of what taken place, first from my point of check out and also then a full description of what actually taken place.

You are watching: Penn and teller cell phone trick

From my point of view

Penn started explaining that they essential somebody from the audience through a smart phone for their initially trick, and that they were going to let that perkid usage the phone to document video of the trick so they could watch exactly how it was done. I, along with hundreds of others in the audience held our phones up as Teller started walking up the isle. He spotted my iPhone, came over, and asked if somebody else in the audience can speak to the phone while I was on phase. I told him that Heather might carry out this, so he asked me to take my iPhone out of the situation and come up on stage with him. Penn asked me my name and also additionally confirmed that somebody in the audience can contact me. I told him my girlfriend Heather can, so he asked Heather to make a quick speak to to verify it. After my phone rang (and Penn made certain the audience heard it by holding it as much as his microphone) they initially began playing roughly with me a little. They had actually me rotate the video recorder on then organized the phone as much as document themselves and also presented themselves, introduced me, then panned throughout the audience. They then said that as I’m on stage with some Vegas magicians that I undoubtedly wanted video of me and also a famous magician. At that allude they carried out a short cardboard cutout of Kriss Angel and had actually me pose with it, which gained numerous laughs from the audience. After that little of fun they had actually the cardboard Kriss Angel lugged off stage and proceeded through the full illusion.

Penn picked up a huge Starbucks coffee cup that had actually been sitting on the stage. He inserted my iPhone in the cup and had me look inside to verify it was tright here. He put the height on the coffee cup but it fell so I bent to pick it up. At this allude I heard a loud roar of laughter from the audience yet didn’t understand why. I gave the top back to him, he put it on the cup, then inserted it on the phase floor in front of us. After saying one or 2 things he promptly stomped on the cup with all his can, crushing it right into a pancake. Obviously the phone wasn’t in the cup any kind of even more. Teller likewise walked up and also tapped the cruburned cup via his foot for good meacertain.

After a minute or so of vamping Penn asked Heather to speak to my phone, which she promptly did. When the phone began ringing Penn asked the audience to allude where the ringing was coming from. Most of the audience was pointing towards the stage but I heard the phone earlier in the home somewright here so I pointed in the direction of the audience. At that suggest the audience realized the ringing was coming from the home too so they began pointing towards the facility of the audience too. Penn drew everyone’s attention to an empty seat in the middle of the facility area and asked the world sitting on either side to look under the seat because that’s where the ringing was coming from. They pulled a styrofoam box out from under the seat and passed it up through the audience to the phase and handed it to me. Penn asked me to review the label on the box, which suggested it came from a seafood restaurant following door to the theater. It was sealed via tape, which Penn asked me to pull off. I opened up package and also discovered a fresh fish lying in a pile of ice. Penn asked me what kind of fish it was yet I didn’t acknowledge it so I simply sassist something favor “I don’t recognize. A dead fish.” which got a good reaction from the audience. Penn shelp it was a tilapia. As Teller confirmed the fish in the box to the audience Penn handed me a microphone. Teller placed the fish on a table that had actually been rolled out as Penn had actually Heather call my phone. Sure enough I heard the phone ringing from inside the fish and I organized the microphone up cshed to the fish so that the audience can hear it also. Teller picked up a knife, cut the head off the fish, and tright here inside was a sealed plastic bag via my phone inside.

Penn & Teller have named this illusion “Cell fish”.

What the audience saw

The audience saw a tiny bit more than I did in one sense. When Penn dropped the lid to the coffee cup he already had actually my iPhone inside the cup. As I bent down to pick up the lid for him he supposedly threw his hand also up, leading to the iPhone to fly up out of the cup behind us wbelow Teller caught it in a huge red plastic bucket. This is what led to the audience to roar through laughter and why the phone wasn’t in the cup as soon as Penn stomped on it. Teller took the red bucket and suspfinished it from a cable that was raised up over my head, so the phone was suspended ten feet or so above me inside this bucket.

When Penn motivated Heather to contact my phone this is why a lot of the audience pointed at the phase, assuming that the ringing was coming from the bucket suspfinished over my head. But it was obvious that the sound was coming from the empty seat in the audience, so that’s the crux of the illusion as far as the audience goes – how did the phone magically move from the red bucket that was suspfinished above my head the entire time to inside the styrofoam box that they pulled out from underneath that seat?

I was actually able to find a pair videos on YouTube of this trick as the audience observed it. Here are two of them – one has actually great video however lousy volume and the other has much better volume than video so check them both out if you want:

How it worked (spoiler!)

If you don’t desire to recognize exactly how they did it then stop reading right here as this explains specifically just how it was all done.

When the Kriss Angel cardboard cutout was lugged out on phase both Penn & Teller pulled out some fake jewelry to add to the cutout. As they attached this fake jewelry (a big necklace and also a glittery cross) Penn reportedly slipped my iPhone right into a pocket on the earlier of the cutout. He swapped it for a fake iPhone that I think was already attached to the earlier of the cutout. When the cutout was lugged off stage my iPhone went with it. Penn put the fake iPhone right into the Starbucks cup then tossed that one right into the red bucket as I was misdirected by the lid that he “accidentally” dropped onto the floor in front of me. The audience believed it was my iPhone that flew via the air right into the bucket, but it was obviously just a prop.

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As Penn & Teller defined what they were going to perform to the audience, a stagehand off phase retrieved my iPhone from the Kriss Angel cutout, put it in a plastic bag, and also then put it inside the fish, which had been slit open on one side. I never witnessed that side of the fish till after Teller had actually reduced the head off, so I wouldn’t have actually known that the reduced was currently there. This fish ssuggest was lhelp level in the tray that was rolled out to Penn & Teller. It wouldn’t have been visible to the audience while in the tray. The box that was uncovered under an audience members seat and also brought up on stage had a comparable looking fish packed in ice, however that fish was physically attached to the box. When Teller flips over package as if he’s dumping the fish out onto the table he’s only dumping the ice out for effect. The prop fish in package stays (and he hides it in the method he puts package & lid down), and the fish containing the phone is left on the cutting board via all the ice.

They’ve obviously been doing this trick for a while given that there’s a ton of video of it up on YouTube. Just search for “Penn & Teller cell fish” and also you’ll uncover them all. Well here’s mine to add to the mix: