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Cy Endfield

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Cy Endfield
BornCyril Raker Endfield
November 10, 1914
Scranton, Pennsylvania
DiedApril 16, 1995 (age 80)
Shipston-on-Stour, 60 miles northwest of London, England

Cy Endfield (November 10, 1914 – April 16, 1995) was an amateur magician, screenwriter, film director, theater director, author and inventor.


After attending Yale University, Endfield began his career as a theater director and drama coach, becoming an important figure in New York's progressive theatre scene. Despite this shared background, it was largely Endfield's skill as a card magician which brought him to the attention of Orson Welles, who recruited him as an apprentice for Mercury Productions.

In 1951 Endfield was named as a Communist at a HUAC hearing. Blacklisted by the movie studio bosses, he was unable to get work in Hollywood and moved to Britain where he wrote and directed films under various pseudonyms. His most famous work is 1964's Zulu.

Another accomplishment that Endfield is credited is a pocket-sized/miniature computer with a chorded keypad that allows rapid typing without a bulky single-stroke keyboard. It functions like a musical instrument by pressing combinations of keys that he called a "Microwriter" and later, "CyKey", to generate a full alphanumeric character set.

Endfield was an accomplished magician and creator of card magic. Some of his creations in card magic were written up in "Cy Endfield's Entertaining Card Magic" by Lewis Ganson, which was originally run in the Gen. Cy wrote the forward for Versatile Card Magic book by Frank Simon.

Cy Endfield died in 1995 in Shipston-on-Stour, Warwickshire, England, at the age of 80.[1] [2] [3]


In Magie Vol. 75 (1995), death announcement, August p. 322, claims he was born in South Africa.

In MAGICIANA CY ENDFIELD, HIS FILMS AND HIS MAGIC, Tony Giorgio writes "Other than ascertaining that Endfield was born in Scranton, I've been unable to find any information regard­ing his early years, but in view of his accomplishments it is reasonable to assume that he spent a good por­tion of those years studying and practicing magic and sleight-of-hand."

In Magic Circular, Vol. 95, No. 1023, October 2001 you will find: Club Night Events, p. 346, peported by Brian Sibley MMC...

..There was actually quite a bit of disagreement between the teams (and, indeed, within the teams) about several questions with consequent effect on marble-levels. "Where was Cy Endfield born?" "New York?" someone hazarded. "No", responded the Chairman, "South Africa!" Well, that may have been the answer according to Ali Bongo's reference books, but according to Bobby Bernard, Cy Endfield had told him, that he wasn't born in South Africa, but Manhattan...



  1. Obit Genii, Vol. 58, No. 8, June 1995, page 616
  2. The Linking Ring, Vol. 75, No. 6, June, 1995, BROKEN WAND CY ENDFIELD, page 117
  3. Magie (Magischer Zirkel v. Deutschland), Vol. 75, No. 7/8, July/August 1995, Obituary Cy Endfield, page 322
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