Oscar winner Adrien Brody to star as ecapologist Houdini

The Pianist star will play the famous illusionist Harry Houdini in upcoming mini-series

The US television channel History has revealed that it will air a four-hour miniseries about the magician and his wife, with Adrien Brody playing the lead role.

The series will trace Houdini's rags to riches story, with House of Cards actress Kristen Connolly cast as Houdini's wife, Bess, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

Houdini will chronicle the off-stage life of the Hungarian-American performer, who stunned audiences with his lock-picking and acts of escape from sealed chests before his death in 1926 following an injury sustained while  performing.

"Since my childhood, when I dreamed of being a great magician, Harry Houdini has been one of my heroes," Brody told the magazine.

"His bravery and obsessive determination still fascinate me. Houdini mastered the art of the escape - not only from physical chains, but from poverty and the social constraints of a humble immigrant origin. His life story appeals to the universal longing for acceptance with which we can all identify. To portray him is beyond an honor (sic)."

The drama will feature key moments in the magician's life - his battles to expose spiritualist fraudsters and his encounters with US presidents, Sherlock Holmes author Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and Grigori Rasputin.

Dirk Hoogstra, an executive at History, formerly the History Channel, said, "The great Harry Houdini is a fascinating man in history and I have no doubt that Adrien Brody will bring the magician's riveting story to life for our audience."

Production of the series will begin in Autumn.