Who's Minding the Mint? (1967)

97 mins | Comedy | September 1967

Director:

Howard Morris

Producer:

Norman Maurer

Cinematographer:

Joseph Biroc

Editor:

Adrienne Fazan

Production Designer:

John Beckman

Production Company:

Norman Maurer Productions
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HISTORY

Who’s Minding the Mint? marked the feature film directorial debut of actor-turned-director Howard Morris.
       Prior to the start of production, filmmakers met with the U.S. Treasury Department over the legality of depicting real money in counterfeiting scenes, as stated in a 26 Apr 1965 DV item. Once government approval was obtained, they arranged to borrow $313,000 in $100 bills from the Bank of America, for a daily interest fee and $5,000 in insurance, according to the 2 Aug 1966 DV. The money was allowed to be shown in the film but not in the trailers advertising it. An article in the 5 Aug 1966 LAT added that the borrowed cash was delivered to the set daily by a Brinks armored truck, and guarded by four security guards.
       Principal photography began on 25 Jul 1966 on location in Washington, D.C., as noted in the 29 Jul 1966 DV. Due to a glut of productions shooting on the Columbia Pictures studio lot, the studio was unable to accommodate Who’s Minding the Mint? once it returned from Washington, D.C. Soundstages were rented at the Producers Studio in Hollywood, CA, instead. Four days of location filming also took place at Los Angeles’s Exposition Park.
       Various items published in DV between Jul and Aug 1966 identified the following actors as cast members: John Silver, Jimmy Lloyd, Dale Van Sickle, Carl Saxe, Hubie Kerns, Walter Davis, Wally Rose, Jim Shepherd, Jerry Vance, Guy Way, Victor Paul, Harry Fleer, and Colin Male. John Blankenhorn was named as assistant location manager in the 5 Aug 1966 LAT, and Wendell Franklin ...

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Who’s Minding the Mint? marked the feature film directorial debut of actor-turned-director Howard Morris.
       Prior to the start of production, filmmakers met with the U.S. Treasury Department over the legality of depicting real money in counterfeiting scenes, as stated in a 26 Apr 1965 DV item. Once government approval was obtained, they arranged to borrow $313,000 in $100 bills from the Bank of America, for a daily interest fee and $5,000 in insurance, according to the 2 Aug 1966 DV. The money was allowed to be shown in the film but not in the trailers advertising it. An article in the 5 Aug 1966 LAT added that the borrowed cash was delivered to the set daily by a Brinks armored truck, and guarded by four security guards.
       Principal photography began on 25 Jul 1966 on location in Washington, D.C., as noted in the 29 Jul 1966 DV. Due to a glut of productions shooting on the Columbia Pictures studio lot, the studio was unable to accommodate Who’s Minding the Mint? once it returned from Washington, D.C. Soundstages were rented at the Producers Studio in Hollywood, CA, instead. Four days of location filming also took place at Los Angeles’s Exposition Park.
       Various items published in DV between Jul and Aug 1966 identified the following actors as cast members: John Silver, Jimmy Lloyd, Dale Van Sickle, Carl Saxe, Hubie Kerns, Walter Davis, Wally Rose, Jim Shepherd, Jerry Vance, Guy Way, Victor Paul, Harry Fleer, and Colin Male. John Blankenhorn was named as assistant location manager in the 5 Aug 1966 LAT, and Wendell Franklin was listed as an assistant director in a 29 Sep 1966 Los Angeles Sentinel brief, which noted Franklin was the only African American assistant director working in the motion picture industry at that time.

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GEOGRAPHIC LOCATIONS
PERSONAL & COMPANY INDEX CREDITS
CREDIT
HISTORY CREDITS
SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Daily Variety
26 Apr 1965
p. 2
Daily Variety
7 Jul 1966
p. 10
Daily Variety
28 Jul 1966
p. 4
Daily Variety
29 Jul 1966
p. 1, 4
Daily Variety
29 Jul 1966
p. 10
Daily Variety
1 Aug 1966
p. 8
Daily Variety
2 Aug 1966
p. 2
Daily Variety
3 Aug 1966
p. 4
Daily Variety
8 Aug 1966
p. 11
Daily Variety
11 Aug 1966
p. 8
Daily Variety
12 Aug 1966
p. 16
Daily Variety
19 Aug 1966
p. 6
Los Angeles Sentinel
29 Sep 1966
Section B, p. 10
Los Angeles Times
5 Aug 1966
Section C, p. 9
Los Angeles Times
15 Nov 1967
Section D, p. 14
Los Angeles Times
17 Nov 1967
Section C, p. 17
New York Times
7 Dec 1967
---
Variety
25 May 1966
p. 24
Variety
27 Sep 1967
p. 6, 26
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
PRODUCTION TEXT
A Norman Maurer Production
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Asst dir
PRODUCER
WRITERS
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
Aerial photog
ART DIRECTOR
Art dir
FILM EDITOR
Film ed
SET DECORATORS
Set dec
Set dec
MUSIC
VISUAL EFFECTS
Spec eff
MAKEUP
Makeup supv
Hairstyles
PRODUCTION MISC
Andrew J. Durkus
Unit prod mgr
DETAILS
Release Date:
September 1967
Premiere Information:
Richmond, Virginia, opening: 26 Sep 1967; Los Angeles opening: 15 Nov 1967; New York opening: 6 Dec 1967
Production Date:
began 25 Jul 1966
Copyright Info
Claimant
Date
Copyright Number
Norman Maurer Productions
10 October 1967
LP34961
Physical Properties:
Sound
Technicolor by Pathé
Color
Technicolor by Pathé
Duration(in mins):
97
Country:
United States
Language:
English
SYNOPSIS

Harry Lucas, a money checker at the United States Mint, lives like a millionaire--not by taking home "samples" but by getting luxury items on sixty-day trial and then switching his accounts to other stores. Although his extravagance raises suspicions, an audit clears him. One day Verna Baxter, an attractive money cutter enamored of Harry, gives him a bag of fudge, and he mistakenly stuffs $50,000 worth of new bills into it, takes it home and--since Verna's fudge is terrible--dumps the bag's contents in the garbage disposal. Upon realizing his mistake, Harry convinces Pop Gillis, a retired member of the printing staff, that they could sneak into the mint at night and print duplicate bills. They will need safe-cracker Avery Dugan to get the essential engraved plates; Dugan is deaf, however, and needs a hearing aid to do the job. When they go to Luther Burton's pawnshop for one, he forces them to hire him as their manager for a $2,000 cut. Since their access to the mint must be through the sewer system, they next hire sewer expert Ralph Randazzo; and then they engage the services of "The Captain," whose job is to design a boat. Furthermore, because the best manhole to enter is opposite Imogene Harris's apartment, ice cream truck driver Willie Owens is brought in to keep her out of the way. Finally, Pop realizes that they still need someone to cut the bills, and Harry persuades Verna to do this service. Luther keeps arguing for more money until finally each individual's cut comes to $1 million. Then Harry learns that automation is imminent and all presses are to be removed the following day. Frantic, he alerts ...

More Less

Harry Lucas, a money checker at the United States Mint, lives like a millionaire--not by taking home "samples" but by getting luxury items on sixty-day trial and then switching his accounts to other stores. Although his extravagance raises suspicions, an audit clears him. One day Verna Baxter, an attractive money cutter enamored of Harry, gives him a bag of fudge, and he mistakenly stuffs $50,000 worth of new bills into it, takes it home and--since Verna's fudge is terrible--dumps the bag's contents in the garbage disposal. Upon realizing his mistake, Harry convinces Pop Gillis, a retired member of the printing staff, that they could sneak into the mint at night and print duplicate bills. They will need safe-cracker Avery Dugan to get the essential engraved plates; Dugan is deaf, however, and needs a hearing aid to do the job. When they go to Luther Burton's pawnshop for one, he forces them to hire him as their manager for a $2,000 cut. Since their access to the mint must be through the sewer system, they next hire sewer expert Ralph Randazzo; and then they engage the services of "The Captain," whose job is to design a boat. Furthermore, because the best manhole to enter is opposite Imogene Harris's apartment, ice cream truck driver Willie Owens is brought in to keep her out of the way. Finally, Pop realizes that they still need someone to cut the bills, and Harry persuades Verna to do this service. Luther keeps arguing for more money until finally each individual's cut comes to $1 million. Then Harry learns that automation is imminent and all presses are to be removed the following day. Frantic, he alerts the gang that the job must be done that night. When they converge in outlandish get-ups, it is obvious that they came as they were--and Pop even brings his pregnant beagle, who proceeds to deliver her litter. Although the boat collapses, they manage to get the money and escape. While they are celebrating, however, their incompetent lookout, Ralph's cousin Mario, allows garbage collectors to pick up the money, which eventually gets tossed into the sea. Only enough of the bills are recovered to correct Harry's mistake, but he has at least found true love with Verna. And the rest of the gang skin-dive for the missing money.

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Legend
Viewed by AFI
Partially Viewed
Offscreen Credit
Name Occurs Before Title
AFI Life Achievement Award

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