Broiden (left) as Wizzo the Wizard
|Born||July 10, 1934|
Marshall Brodien, known for his role as Wizzo the Wizard, played a wizard clown that performed on WGN-TV's Bozo's Circus and The Bozo Show from 1968-1994. Brodien, who had been making semi-regular guest appearances since 1968, later appeared as a wizard character in an Arabian Nights-inspired costume which evolved into Wizzo the Wizard by the early 1970s. He was billed as being from Arobia (which is based on "Arabia" because A and O are vowels) and possessed the Stone of Zanzabar. According to Brodien, the first time he touched Bozo (Bob Bell) with the stone, Bozo quipped "I remember when you got stoned at the Zanzabar." During the mid-1970s it was rumored that Wizzo (the character, not Brodien) was a Jewish convert to Islam. Producers of the show during that time, however, denied this rumor and claimed that the storyline would have just "confused small children" watching the show.
Oliver O. Oliver (Ray Rayner) left Bozo's Circus in 1971 and was briefly replaced by Pat Tobin as Oliver's cousin Elrod T. Potter, and then by magician John Thompson (an acquaintance of Roy Brown's and Brodien's) as Clod Hopper. By 1973, WGN gave up on Thompson and increased Brodien's appearances as Wizzo. Brodien left the program in 1994.
In 1970, Brodien was the spokesperson and creator for a trick magic card deck known as TV Magic Cards, which was a renamed Svengali deck. The deck resembled a regular playing card deck, except that the cards could be shown as all the same card. Many other card tricks could be performed with the deck. Over 17 million decks of the cards were sold.
In the 80's Marshall Brodien would drive around the Chicago-land area in a Cadillac Eldorado with vanity license plates reading "WIZ" and custom pin-striping which contained a tiny "WIZ" within the striping.
Brodien currently designs magic trick sets for children through a company called Cadaco Toys. He occasionally makes public appearances in the Chicago area and his autobiography, The Magical Life Of Marshall Brodien, was published. One of his Wizzo costumes is in the Bozo's Circus collection of the Museum of Broadcast Communications.
Bozo Show references
- Toonarific article on Bozo
- Bozo's Circus (1961-1980) at the Internet Movie Database
- The Bozo Show (1980-1994) at the Internet Movie Database
- The Bozo Super Sunday Show (1994-2001) at the Internet Movie Database
- Bozo: 40 Years of Fun! (TV special) at the Internet Movie Database
- "Bozo Timeline-1960s". WGN-TV. Archived from the original on 9 July 2001. Retrieved 16 February 2011.
- "Bozo Timeline-1990s". WGN-TV. Archived from the original on 8 August 2001. Retrieved 16 February 2011.
- ephemera: Marshall Brodien TV Magic Cards
- "Bozo Timeline-1970s". WGN-TV. Retrieved 16 February 2011.
- "Bozo Timeline-2000". WGN-TV. Archived from the original on 8 August 2001. Retrieved 16 February 2011.
- Bozo's Circus at Chicagofest 1979. Brodien as Wizzo. Museum of Broadcast Communications (Windows Media Player)
- Bozo 25th Anniversary 1986. Museum of Broadcast Communications (Windows Media Player)
- The Magic Box commercial at The Museum of Classic Chicago Television