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The Illusionist (2006)

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In turn-of-the-century Vienna, a magician uses his abilities to secure the love of a woman far above his social standing.



(screenplay), (short story "Eisenheim the Illusionist")
1,371 ( 583)
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 10 wins & 10 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Josef Fischer (as Edward Marsan)
Young Eisenheim (as Aaron Johnson)
Doctor / Old Man
Herr Doebler
Philip McGough ...
Dr. Hofzinser
Count Rainer
Von Thurnburg


In late nineteenth century Vienna, renowned illusionist Eisenheim is reunited with the Duchess von Teschen when she is volunteered from the audience to participate in an illusion during one of his performances. Despite having not seen each other in fifteen years when they were teenagers, they almost immediately recognize each other as Eduard Abramovich and Sophie von Teschen, they who had a doomed romance at that time due to their class differences. The Duchess is soon to be wed to the Crown Prince Leopold in what would be for him a marriage solely in pursuit of power: overthrowing his father, the Emperor Leopold, as well as overtaking the Hungarian side of the empire. The Crown Prince is known to use violence against women if it suits his needs or purposes. As such, the Duchess, who realizes that she still loves Eisenheim and he her, can never leave the Crown Prince without it jeopardizing her life. After Eisenheim humiliates the Crown Prince at a private show which results in an ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Nothing is what it seems

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some sexuality and violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:




Release Date:

1 September 2006 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El ilusionista  »


Box Office


$16,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$927,956, 20 August 2006, Limited Release

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


According to the director's commentary, Jessica Biel dressed in a period costume for her audition. See more »


Choreographer Marleen Pennison, Movement Coach for the film, is incorrectly credited as "Maureen Pennison". See more »


[first lines]
woman in audience: It's her. I know it's her! She wants to tell us something.
See more »


Featured in Jessica Biel on the Illusionist (2007) See more »

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User Reviews

Worth the price of tickets
3 July 2006 | by See all my reviews

The Illusionist is a very entertaining movie. The beginning of the movie sets an awesome foundation for the rest of the film to work with, without making the rest of the movie predictable and pointless. Although the basic story of boy gets girl, boy loses girl may not be original, the way the plot is presented with the excellent magical imagery keeps one interested in Edward Norton's character. My only complaint would be that the movie needs a little editing towards the end as the creators seem to show basically the same scene over and over in an attempt to drive home Norton's character's emotional distress. Unfortunately, this gets a little monotonous for viewers. Still, Norton, Sewell, Giamatti (and surprisingly Biel) provide excellent performances that, along with the beautiful cinematography, make a great movie.

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