The movie contains several factual errors, the most telling of which is the dramatization of Harry Houdini's death. In the film he almost drowns in the torture tank trick and dies on the stage in the arms of his wife. In real life he was punched in the stomach by a college student who had heard that Houdini could withstand any blow without harm. This did, indeed, rupture his appendix. He later collapsed on stage, was taken to the hospital and died there.
Although Houdini didn't die onstage at a Halloween performance, as this film would have you believe, he did, indeed, die on Halloween, 1926, several weeks after his last stage performance. To this day, in Houdini's memory, October 31st is celebrated as International Magic Day.
To get publicity, Houdini (played by Tony Curtis) dangled from a flagpole upside down while escaping from a straight jacket. In the 1965 movie The Great Race, the publicity seeking The Great Leslie, also played by Tony Curtis, dangles upside down from a balloon while escaping from a straight jacket.
In an interview made in his home studio on Thursday June 1st 1995, Mike Oldfield told that the song "Moonlight Shadow", which is probably his best known song and most successful single, was originally inspired by this movie.