Magician's stealth shark suit makes him invisible to great whites

Too bad the cast of Jaws never got to meet Andrew Mayne and his Ghost Diver getup.

Leslie Katz Former Culture Editor
Leslie Katz led a team that explored the intersection of tech and culture, plus all manner of awe-inspiring science, from space to AI and archaeology. When she's not smithing words, she's probably playing online word games, tending to her garden or referring to herself in the third person.
  • Third place film critic, 2021 LA Press Club National Arts & Entertainment Journalism Awards
Leslie Katz
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I ain't afraid of no sharks.

Video screenshot by Leslie Katz/CNET

Most people try to steer clear of great white sharks. Most people aren't Andrew Mayne. And most people don't have an underwater stealth suit like his that lets them get up close to the beasts without being seen. 

Mayne's a magician and illusionist who's done behind-the-scenes work for David Copperfield, Penn & Teller and David Blaine. He decided to graduate from just fooling people to fooling fish. Really big ones. 

"Next thing you know," he says, "you find yourself 80 feet underwater surrounded by great whites going, 'How the hell did this happen?'"  

The CNET video crew caught up with Mayne to ask him about his one-of-a-kind shark armor, called Ghost Diver, which is created from a material that's quiet and reflects light in a way that makes it blend into the background, "kind of like a ninja costume." It also gives off a bit of a Darth Vader vibe.  

Mayne and his suit will be featured in a Discovery Shark Week special Friday, Aug. 2 called Andrew Mayne: Ghost Diver. In it, he and underwater photographer Andy Casagrande put themselves in the middle of a great-white party in Australia. Willingly. Without a cage. Mayne trained with shark experts for the feat, learning how to interact with the creatures and how to breathe underwater quietly. 

"The funny thing is you're wearing this and you kind of feel cool, like, 'Ah I got armor on,'" he tells CNET video editor Andy Altman. Then you realize "a shark would tear through this in a second."

Watch the video above to see how Mayne answers Altman's totally reasonable question: "Are you fucking crazy?" And how things work out between him and the shark shiver. 

Andrew Mayne: Ghost Driver airs Friday at 9 p.m. PT/ET on Discovery and also streams on the Discovery Go app.