Kangaroo Jack

Discussions of new films, books, television shows, and media indirectly related to magic and magicians. For example, there may be a book on mnemonics or theatrical technique we should know or at least know about.

Postby Guest » 01/08/03 07:20 AM

I've been seeing the trailer for the forthcoming movie "Kangaroo Jack" for the past few weeks. Does anyone know if either of the writers (Scott Rosenberg and Steve Bing) have a connection to magic? The plotline of the characters taking photos of a kangaroo which they've dressed up in a jacket, and then the kangaroo hopping off with the valuable contents of the jacket, seems mighty reminiscent to me of a similar Dai Vernon story.

(I guess I should recount the Dai Vernon story for those that haven't heard it, as best as I can recall it now. Perhaps I read it in Volume IV of The Vernon Chronicles? Dai was driving through the outback while visiting Australia when he struck a kangaroo with the car, killing it. In a gesture quite revealing as to his sense of humor, he placed his vest and coat on the poor creature, propped it up against his car, and began taking photos. I've no idea what story he planned to tell those he showed the photos to. Well, it seems the kangaroo was not dead, but had merely been knocked unconscious. It came to and hopped off into the outback, taking not only Dai's coat and vest, but the wallet and passport in them as well. The difficulties Dai experienced in explaining the loss of his passport were probably minor compared to what the poor kangaroo experienced among his own kind, what with his unusual new wardrobe.)
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Postby Ryan Matney » 01/08/03 01:43 PM

I was wondering the same thing myself
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Postby Guest » 01/13/03 09:52 AM

The Kangaroo Thief story is an old urban legend.
Dai undoubterdly heard it while visiting down under and inserted himself into the story, unless it really did happen to him and thus became the basis for the legend.
If this is the case I am sure folkloristJan Harold Brunvand would very much like to hear about it and see the photo of Dai and the stunned Kangaroo.
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Postby Jeff Eline » 01/13/03 06:46 PM

At the October MAES convention at Valley Forge, Michael Ammar was asked during a lecture if he would give any Vernon stories. He re-counted two - the second was the kangaroo story. Certainly doesn't make it true, but Vernon aparently told it quite often.
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Postby Guest » 01/14/03 04:37 AM

Payne is correct. It is an urban legend. The kangaroo story has been around since the turn of the 20th century, however if I am not mistaken, the kangaroo was originally struck by a train and not a car.

I know the kangaroo story is attributed to Dai Vernon but Dai most likely had never been to Australia at the time the story had come out. However, when Dai Vernon was in Australia, he met a woman in a bar and when he woke up his kidneys had been removed and were being sold on the black market.
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Postby Guest » 01/14/03 02:27 PM

Not only is it a urban legend but he has also been made into a film before.

And its not an urban legend either, it happened to a friend of a friend of mine. :rolleyes:

P.S. The australia accents sound very dodgy.
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Postby Steve V » 01/15/03 08:00 PM

I heard the kangaroo had a hook instead of one paw and when the guys took off to look for the jacket they found in the door of their truck....a bloody hook.
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