He appeared in several David Mamet movies, including "House of Games," "The Spanish Prisoner," "Things Change," "Redbelt" and "State and Main."
In the 1997 James Bond film "Tomorrow Never Dies," Jay played a cyber-terrorist to Pierce Brosnan's Bond.
With Weber, he created the Deceptive Practices company, which provided solutions to movies and TV productions such as the wheelchair that hid Gary Sinise's legs in "Forrest Gump." They also worked on films including "The Prestige," "The Illusionist" and "Oceans Thirteen."
A New Yorker profile called him "the most gifted sleight of hand artist alive," and Jay was also known for his card tricks and memory feats.
He also provided the narration for movies such as Paul Thomas Anderson's "Magnolia." His one-man Broadway show directed by Mamet, "Ricky Jay and His 52 Assistants," was recorded for an HBO special in 1996.
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A documentary about his life, "Deceptive Practice: The Mysteries and Mentors of Ricky Jay," was released in 2012.
In "Deadwood," he played card sharp Eddie Sawyer during the first season, and also wrote for the show.
He’s expertly able to perform and yet he knows the theory, history, literature of the field." Steve Martin, with whom he appeared in "The Spanish Prisoner," described Jay in the New Yorker profile, “I sort of think of Ricky as the intellectual élite of magicians.
Jay's manager, Winston Simone, said he died of natural causes, adding, "He was one of a kind. We will never see the likes of him again."
Ricky Jay, a master magician who also acted in films and TV shows such as "Boogie Nights," "House of Games" and "Deadwood," died Saturday in Los Angeles. He was 72.
A student of all facets of magic, prestidigitation and trickery, he maintained a large library of historic works and wrote two books, as well as numerous articles for the New Yorker; he also frequently lectured at museums and universities.
Jay first worked in film with on Caleb Deschanel's "The Escape Artist." Jay, who was born Richard Jay Potash in Brooklyn, was introduced to magic by his grandfather. He began performing in New York, opening for rock bands.
His partner in the Deceptive Practices company, Michael Weber, tweeted, "I am sorry to share that my remarkable friend, teacher, collaborator and co-conspirator is gone." His attorney Stan Coleman confirmed his death.
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