The History of Prop Money

Everyone has seen the movie, Dark Knight. Remember the scene where the Joker (brilliantly played by Heath Ledger) burns millions of dollars? How much do you think that scene cost the producers? Well, in terms of the value of money burnt, probably about ten thousand dollars. Yes, that’s it, because what was being burnt wasn’t real money, it was prop money. 

Scenes like that always use prop money. Firstly, because it’s illegal to destroy real money, and secondly, because no production house can afford to burn real cash in that value. 

Are you already entertaining thoughts of making a cool InstaReel with prop money that looks real on camera? In case you’re wondering where you can get your hands on some prop money, look no further than Strobeprops




What is prop money?

Prop money is just stacks of replica money that look real on camera. Even when prop money is shot from as close as 3 feet, you as a viewer, won’t be able to tell the difference between the real thing and well-made prop money.  that, as a viewer, you can’t detect the difference, especially if the movie money was manufactured through high-quality production lines from a reliable supplier.

And it’s not just movies that use prop or replica money. It is also widely used in music videos, training videos, TV, Fashion, and YouTube videos. So how did it all start?


History of Movie Prop Money

Made back in 1903, The Great Train Robbery was the first movie to feature stacks of money. Since there was no prop money back then, the producers were forced to use stacks of real money. 

This was a costly exercise in terms of the financial cost of borrowing money from a bank and paying for insurance coverage. It was a cost beyond the budget of most movies and a risk the producers didn’t want to take. 

However, soon after, the United States government banned the use of any kind of real US dollars in front of cameras due to the surge in counterfeiting around that time.

Around 1920 there was a lot of old Mexican currency that was no longer in circulation due to the the Mexican revolution. A lot of movies started featuring this in place of real money. After all, it was the only way to show money in the movies. 

As time passed, directors started running out of these currency and many upcoming companies started producing their own replica money, within Government guidelines.

Thus, movie producers started getting their replica money from these third-party companies. The laws that were regulating them, back in the 20s, are still valid  today.


Forms of Motion Picture Money

The best motion picture money is always full print, it is printed on both sides of the bill. This one is similar to the actual bill, and is the most realistic prop money; it’s used in nearly all movies.

You can check some samples of our products here.

A lot of prop money companies sell stacks with blank fillers, where only the top and bottom bills are full print while the rest are just blank fillers. At Strobeprops we only want to make the best. Hence, all our stacks are made with full print bills. 

Stacks with blank fillers are often used in prank videos made on a budget. 


Who makes the best prop money?

Now that's a tough question to answer! There are a handful of companies that specialize in making high quality prop money that is widely used in movies, TV shows, and leading music videos, and Strobeprops is one of them. Our prop money has been featured in movies and TV Shows, as well as music videos and unboxing videos on YouTube. We must be doing something right. 


What is the difference between fake movie props and real money?

On camera, there is no difference. It is very difficult to determine whether the money you see on TV is real or not.

There are very subtle differences between movie props and actual money. However, some laws regulate realistic fake money use in movies.

Designing the best fake money stacks is a challenging task. When designing it, you must create a bill that looks nearly identical to the real bill, so that people can’t notice the difference.

However, it doesn’t have to be perfectly identical to the real thing, to avoid any legal issues.

Most prop money will feature the word Copy or Replica on the bills. In addition, all the bills will have the same serial number. Like we said, you need to look real close before you can tell the difference. 

Furthermore, to create it, you have to first make digital files and then transfer those to printing plates. It is a long and tedious process to get right, perhaps that's why there's only a handful of good companies. 

There are other subtle differences, such as the quality of the paper used and how similar its texture is to that of the real currency.

This is what puts us at the top of its industry. Our quality differentiates us from other companies. We can confidently claim that we offer the most realistic replica money in the market!

An integral part of good quality prop money is the accuracy of printing colors. To ensure that the colors are close to real money, Strobeprops only uses the best and most expensive inks on the market. 


Owning Movie Prop Money

Many people wonder whether it’s legal to own it or not. Well, the simple answer is yes, as long as you use it legally. That means you can own and use it for  films, shows, and pranks, and videos. 

However, trying to use prop money as legal tender to buy something is illegal and you will face prosecution and up to a maximum sentence of 20 years imprisonment and a fine.


Quality is Our Motto

That was brief journey through time and the history of prop money. 

At Strobeprops we pride ourselves on our outstanding quality which is backed reviews from hundreds of satisfied customers. They choose us for our high-quality, fast-shipping & tracking services, and affordable price.


Feel free to contact us, and our helpful sales team would be glad to take care of your needs.  

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