David Copperfield has played the ultimate prank on an obsessed anti-fan who insists the illusionist is the devil - by having his photo taken with him.

The mystery man pickets all of Copperfield's New York shows, insisting the magician is not what he seems.

The illusionist used to be unnerved by the protestor and so asked aides to take his picture, and now he's found the perfect way to get back at his number one hater for years of defamation.

Copperfield says, "Two months ago I was back in the same city and he was back with the same sign and the same overalls and we decided to have some fun.

"I put the picture in my pocket and my friend took a Polaroid camera and went outside to meet the guy with me. I went up to him and said, 'Sir, I'd like to introduce myself, I am David Copperfield and I'm sure your heart's in the right place but I am not supernatural.'

"And I said, 'Would you mind if I get a picture with you..?' I put my arm around him and my friend took a picture of me, the guy and the sign.

"The picture comes out of the Polaroid camera and I put it in my pocket and I took two steps away and I said, 'You know sir, I would like you to have that picture.' I reached into my pocket and pulled out the picture from two years ago - the one without me in it. I handed it to him and I walked away."

01/11/2004 10:47