Robert Angier

Robert Angier

    The Prestige
Photo Credit: Everett Collection

Character Analysis

(Avoiding Spoilers)

Living… for revenge. After entering the world of professional magicians as an assistant to “Milton the Magician,” Angier’s young wife tragically dies in a water tank stunt. Angier blames his co-worker, Alfred Borden. The two magicians begin a life-long feud, as they both aspire to be the greatest magician in the world. Angier dubs himself “The Great Danton” and begins to awe the public with his tricks. But when his rival develops a confounding and highly popular act, Angier begins an obsessive search to develop the greatest act in the world.

Profession… magician. Angier begins his solo act with the help of John Cutter, an older magician who knows the tricks of the trade. Angier also employs a beautiful young assistant named Olivia Wenscombe, who may or may not be entirely trustworthy.

Interests… mysticism; new tricks; old tricks, like bird cage acts; and disappearing acts.

Relationship Status… widowed. Angier begins to fall for his new assistant Olivia, and charges her with the mission of spying on Borden from the inside. Olivia is anxious about this mission, but accepts, for the benefit of Angier’s act.

Challenge… topping Borden’s “The Transported Man,” a shocking act in which Borden magically transports himself across the stage. Angier goes to the ends of the earth to match this trick, even meeting with famous scientist and inventor Nikola Tesla.

Personality… obsessive, dark, and brooding. After Angier’s wife dies in the water tank, he is never the same again. He spends all his time thinking of how to defeat Borden, and seemingly gives up any chance at a happy life. Instead, he pours his energy into competing vigorously for the crown as the greatest professional magician on earth.


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