Over the weekend I made this new illusion video….

Can you solve the mystery of the ball and the glass?



  1. ball stuck to outslde of glass,hole through table covering(inner ring) another sheet of card beneath,whilst moving camera,you move the lower sheet with the camera making it look like the glass is still but really moving with the camera…i think

  2. The center spot on which the glass sits is not continuous with the rest of the surface. I can readily see an edge around it. I reckon that the glass is actually rotating along with the camera, while the rest of the table top stays still.

    The edge needs to be better hidden for this to be a truly effective illusion.

    1. Yes, that was my solution too.
      Reminds me of Copperfield and the Statue of Liberty 😉
      One of the greatest Illusions and a mystery for a long time!

  3. Quick guess would be that the glass is rotating same time as the camera (probably via the centre circle of the table being cut-out and thus able to be rotated separately) – ball is outside the back of the glass the entire time.

  4. For me the clue was that he put his hand on the glass to hold it, while he removed the ball. He would do so if the ball was attached to the glass. And therefore the glass had to move with the camera. And then I saw the hole in the middle of the table.
    An OK illusion, but it needs a little work 🙂

  5. It’s significant the ball goes into the glass in a separate shot, it would have been more convincing if it had been one continuous shot. I agree that it is most likely on the outside all the time, and the glass rotates with the camera. There seems to be a dark spot in the middle of the ball, where it is attached, and Richard never shows the side of the glass where the ball was attached, thus hiding evidence of adheesive.

  6. I was distracted/misdirected by the red/green sponges for a while but it’s clear (ha ha ha) that this can be achieved by a rotating glass. I’m not totally enamoured with the “What you are about to see…” but it’s another clue ie you’ve seen the ball go into the glass, however that doesn’t mean it’s in there now.

  7. Well, there IS an edit, of course. But it’s before the disclaimer and the consequent track around the glass. Without the prep, the illusion wouldn’t play nearly so well I’m guessing.

  8. Contnuous shot only after the message, carton with red and green block do rotate in respect to the camera, glass and attached ball do not.

  9. I worked it out from the assumption (conclusion) that the ball was always outside the glass and worked back from there.

  10. I bet if you could do the same illussion in a single shot starting from when you dropped the ball in the glass instead of showing ‘what you are about to see is one continuos shot with no editing or CGI’ where you got the chance to manipulate and call it an illussion.

    -vishal garg

  11. I got here a bit late so basically…”what the others said”.. but also a clever use of the red and green cubes to mask the potential shadows of the incriminating ball/glassonoutside.

  12. Yes. I certainly saw a dent in the glass. It’s not a normal glass and the ball can be taken out from there.

  13. I agree that it looks as though the glass is rotating, but that’s just a misdirect so that we don’t realise that Richard has placed the glass and ball in a parallel universe and reaches through from this one to grasp the ball, taking advantage of quantum relativity …. oh, wait. No it is just the glass rotating.

  14. The distorted image of the ball is clearly visible at the top of the stem of the glass. When Richard picks the glass up at the end of the shot the distorted image of his fingers is also at the top of the stem – i.e. his fingers are in the same place as the ball. His fingers are at the back of the glass, therefore so was the ball.

  15. I worked it out before the video ended. 😀

    I liked how the setup of putting the ball in the glass before the execution of the trick paralleled Wiseman’s earlier video of the banana and mirror trick’s introductory setup shot.

  16. Can I solve it? Yeah. But I’m still delighted to see it and willing to tell my disbelief to go to hell for a few minutes so I can think it’s magic on some appreciative level (in order to go “Ooh!” and “Ah! That’s just great!”) without dismissing it as some cheap stunt.

    Oh, and I’d hate to be sitting at a magic show with an audience comprised totally of Richard Wiseman Blog commenters… ! It might be bearable if no one asks “Can you solve it?” at the start.

  17. I think:
    The ball is on the outside of the glass and when the continuous shot begins, the board is spinning rather than the camera around it (and there seems to be a cut-out for the glass in the center, so the glass doesn’t move); therefore one only sees the one side of the glass.

  18. Nice illusion. It doesn’t seem like a ball, its a crushed ball stuck to the outside of the glass.

  19. pause at 0.21 and 0.22 … can clearly see a gap forming on left side of base of glass where the middle is cut out.. allowing the glass to be moved along with the camera.. glass spins so ball is stuck to outside/back of glass (probably with magic wax)

  20. This was done by a friend of mine… i dont know if its CGI or anything… it has a bit of comedy at the beginning but in the end its quite spectacular… anyone has an idea of how this illusion is done?

  21. Ha! I was trying to see how the ball in the glass might be launched into the air fast enough while Richard produces a second ball. Didn’t occur to me to just not rotate the glass. 😀

  22. I wasn’t expecting the ‘grab thru the glass’ so the trick worked well, the replay facility does the magician no favours.

  23. I believe the centre of the table in which the glass is placed rotates with the camera, and the ball is always behind the glass.

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