The Danger Of Fake Money | Is Prop Money Counterfeit?
Is Prop Money Counterfeit?
US dollars are the second most counterfeited currency in the world. In 2015, 1 in every 10,000 US banknotes were fake. (1) With so many fake banknotes in circulation, the government has a tough job keeping track of what’s real, what’s fake, and who is trying to replicate legal tender. As specialists when it comes to movie props, we are often asked whether our fake banknotes designed for motion picture production are considered counterfeits. While specially designed and printed to look real to the untrained eye and on the big screen, they’re not counterfeit currency by any means.
Unfortunately, you won’t be able to place an order with Prop Movie Money and start spending fake banknotes at your local mall. While some notes on a movie set might be real, the majority are highly accurate fake banknotes, designed to be used during movie production, but not to be confused with actually bills.
In this article, we’re going to discuss the growing dangers of counterfeit dollars, and how we design hyper-realistic yet obviously fake banknotes for movies to prevent FBI intervention.
The Dangers Of Fake Money
Fake banknotes are a major concern for the international economic climate. Should anyone be able to mass-produce counterfeit currency, it could cause a significant impact on international business, the political climate, and crime rates. Money can act as fuel and in the wrong hands can give criminals the ability to fund larger criminal activity. To monitor and track down fake banknotes, the US government has a number of ways to check whether banknotes are real or fake. This is why US dollars are so intricate in design and will glow a certain color when held in light.
Producing and printing counterfeit money is a crime and punishable by a fine of up to $5,000 or a 15-year jail sentence. (2) However, even if you’re not in the US, if you’re found with counterfeit money, you could face legal consequences. In fact, a businessman in Dubai was recently arrested and fined for filming himself throwing fake Euros from his car for a social media post. He later admitted to having $740,000 of fake banknotes. (3)
While having or printing fake money can land you in jail, it has not stopped the rise in websites attempting to sell counterfeit money. Using the mask of ‘prop money’, many e-commerce websites are trying to sell counterfeit currency to unsuspecting members of the public, as well as film directors and studios. That’s why at Prop Movie Money we are trying to raise awareness of this growing issue online.
Here are just a handful of reasons why fake money is so bad for both the country and the public;
- Fake banknotes reduce the value of real money
- Counterfeit currency will cause inflation since more money is circulating in the economy
- A lack of trust in cold hard cash can have a knock-on effect on cash-only businesses
- The economic impact of businesses fooled by the fake money and fail to be reimbursed by the bank can cause job loss on a huge scale.
So you can clearly see, how we have to be so careful when producing hyper-realistic bills that fool viewers but don’t impact the US economy. (4)
Rush Hour 2 : Prop Money Vs Counterfeit
If you’re familiar with the movie, Rush Hour 2, you should be able to recall the fight scene that involved a staggering amount of counterfeit banknotes - 1 trillion dollars to be exact. As thrilling as this scene was to watch, the considerable amount of money on set being thrown around caused an internal issue during the filming of this movie.
The problem was that the money was so accurately printed that some extras on set became a little light-fingered during filming, and attempted to spend fake banknotes under the impression that they were real. (5) Sparking a major FBI investigation, which led to the confiscation of the movie prop bills, and caused a huge financial loss. While the notes were fake, it still cost $100,000 to print and make them to film this scene. This event in movie history, led to companies like Prop Movie Money printing notes with smart design features, to avoid any legal issues in the future.
The major difference between prop money and counterfeit notes, is that movie prop bills are not designed to ever be used as legal tender, whereas counterfeits are.
Achieve A Close Up Money Shots
To create high-quality fake banknotes that are highly detailed, but impossible to spend or considered counterfeits, Prop Movie Money only prints on one side of the bill for close-up money shots. This gives the grand illusion that the notes are real and can be used as movie props, without drawing attention from the FBI. For scenes that don’t require a close-up of the bills, Prop Movie Money can manufacture low-quality banknotes that are obviously fake and include a number of smart design features that make them easy to tell from counterfeit or real money.
However, being an industry leader, we’ve been alerted to a rise in Amazon listings that are copying our designs, which are trademarked and copyrighted, in order to dupe the public into buying actual counterfeit cash. Despite having approval from our internal legal team and the Secret Service, Amazon has removed our account completely and without warning, and has even banned our approved store from their marketplace.
Even after providing legal documents to confirm our legitimacy as a specialized US movie prop manufacturer and provider, Amazon refused to reinstate our store, but continue to allow replicas and illicit businesses to sell on their platform. This is not only frustrating for us as a business, but also a major concern for the public and government.
Should movie directors and film crews unknowingly purchase counterfeit notes from an Amazon seller that are too realistic, they risk being raided by the FBI. Sadly we know of a number of movie sets where this has actually happened and caused significant problems. Now consider the economic impact and danger to the public. People accidentally purchasing counterfeit dollars is a real concern. While we continue to take legal action against such businesses and Amazon sellers, we are also trying to raise the alarm about this growing issue.
If you are interested in purchasing movie prop banknotes we urge you to contact our team today. With our industry experience, hyper-realistic designs and Secret Service approved manufacturing process, when you invest with us, you won’t be taking on additional risk. We protect our customers so that you can focus on capturing incredible movie scenes with realistic notes, rather than suffering an FBI investigation, causing stress, disruption to filming and damaging your reputation. So, save yourself time and money by avoiding counterfeit sellers and choose to support a legitimate movie prop company.