Scene 6 (27:45-32:33): Forging Pay Checks with Decals

We see Abagnale forging pay checks with a typewriter — the model is unknown.

Pay check forged with a typewriter
Scene 7 — 35:35

(Frank Taylor was one of Abagnale’s many aliases.)

Pay checks do not contain a codeline with a routing number!

To imitate the Pan Am logo on the checks, he gets it off Boeing toy planes. “I located a hobby shop that handled models of Pan Am’s jets and bought several kits in the smaller sizes. [...] I took one of the blank counter checks and across the top affixed a ‘PAN AMERICAN WORLD AIRWAYS’ decal from one of the kits. [...] In the upper left-hand corner of the check I applied the Pan Am logo [...]. (book “Catch Me If You Can”, page 92)

Logo of Pan American World Airways (Pan Am)          Hobby kit for a Pan Am model airplane

Earlier, he had used the same elements to create a fake pilot ID. (book “Catch Me If You Can”, page 36) (You won’t see that in the movie, it would have spoiled the surprise. You see Abagnale soaking a model plane in the bath before you discover why he’s doing that...)

Actor Leonardo DiCaprio on bed with Pan Am model airplanes

Are you ready for some more film technique? When Abagnale is typing away on his old typewriter, the typebars hit the paper so violently that the flowers on the table tremble. And that trembling is shown before you see the typewriter in action (scene 7, 35:08). Spielberg doesn’t hesitate to announce an off-screen presence through vibrations (and sound). Think of the way the T rex is announced indirectly in “Jurassic Park” (1993): the animal is so heavy that its footsteps cause the earth to tremble, which creates waves in the water glasses sitting on the jeep’s dashboard (and later on in a muddy puddle created by the dino’s footprint).

DVD-Blu-ray cover of the Steven Spielberg movie ‘Jurassic Park’        Vibrations in water glasses in the Steven Spielberg movie ‘Jurassic Park’

A little bit later in the movie, he does it again (scene 8, 39:16): Abagnale is making out on a hotel bed with stewardess Marci, but we see the dinner plates from room service falling off the cart because of the bed’s vibration first. (The published screenplay describes the love scene as the moment Abagnale loses his virignity, not that this is obvious when you watch the movie.)

Fast rewind

Submit feedback

Pin it          Tweet                    

Previous sceneNext scene

Opening titlesAbagnaleChecksMICRTypewriterHotelM.D.LawyerPrintingArrestPrisonG-manSitemapSearch

Main menuIntroPlayScenesCredits