Mandrake the Magician, a crime-fighting nightclub magician, discovers one of his partners, Narda, has been kidnapped by enemy agents. Together with his friend and partner Lothar, Mandrake attempts to free her from her abductors, who are willing to trade her for Mandrake's help in locating their quarry, an agent named Edwards. Written by
Jim Beaver <email@example.com>
Beware this man, if you deal in evil. For here comes Mandrake! Mandrake the Magician! With Lothar and Princess Narda, three against evil - shielded by truth, armed with magic... Lothar, Narda and Mandrake the Magician!
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Pilot for a proposed TV series that never materialised.
Part of this film was shot on location in Bermuda, at Marley Beach, which my parents were operating as a cottage colony in the 50s.
I was very young, but hung out with the leads and got their autographs, watched some of the shooting, all very exciting for a little boy! Lothar, played by Woody Strode, was so tall and impressive, but a very friendly guy.
Coe Norton, who played Mandrake, was, of course, a highly-skilled stage magician, and I caught his act in the States in the 1980s. He cut a really sharp figure in tails as the master magician Mandrake on set! I'm not sure what happened to Narda, played by Lisa Howard - she was VERY pretty indeed! A couple of years ago I managed to buy, on eBay, a videotape of this pilot - the programme was rather darkened in the transfer, alas, (a proper commercial production NOT a pirated version I hasten to add!) but in any case this pilot did not apparently pass muster, as the proposed TV series never happened, and the pilot was left sitting on the shelf in the TV history room.
I greatly enjoyed watching the film, for obvious reasons, and it is a good example of an adventure show from fifty years ago! A shame no one has revived Mandrake to bring him back as a half-hour TV show.
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