Thursday, January 9, 2003
The Buzz: Catch Me If You Can
It's number two at the box office again this week -- the Leonardo DiCaprio, Tom Hanks movie, "Catch Me If You Can". But did you know this crime caper is based on a real life story? We have the behind the scenes Buzz.
(WSVN) -- Scene From "Catch Me If You Can": "How can I help you? I'd like to cash this check here and then I'd like to take you out for a steak dinner."
Leonardo DiCaprio plays a suave and smooth talking airline pilot, a doctor and a lawyer in the movie, "Catch Me If You Can".
But turns out his character isn't any of the above -- he's a con artist running from the law.
Scene From "Catch Me If You Can": "Relax, you're late, my name is Allen, Barry Allen, United States Secret Service."
The movie is based on the real life of Frank Abagnale Jr., who was just 16 when he started forging checks.
The real "Catch Me if You Can" star, Frank Abagnale Jr. says, "It started out as survival. I've got to do this in order to eat food, and then it became easy, and then it became more and more of a game, can I do this? Can I actually get away with this?"
Frank's scam started in the 60's and he got so good he cashed in millions of dollars. Eventually the F-B-I caught on and he had to go on the run.
Scene From "Catch Me If You Can": "Frank Taylor, Pan Am, thanks for giving me a lift boys."
He stayed on the run for about 5 years by impersonating -- among other things, an airline pilot.
Abagnale Jr. says, "I thought to myself, what a perfect front. I mean if I could pose as a pilot, I could fly all over the world for free."
His travels took him around the world and even brought him to Miami. Eventually caught in Southern France, Frank went to prison, did his time, and turned his life around. A story which appealed to the stars of the film.
DiCaprio says, "He paid his dues and eventually transformed his whole life to catch criminals such as himself."
Tom Hanks says, "He literally took all the work that he was doing in order to kite checks and pass bad paper and he turned it into something good."
Abagnale Jr. says, "Just goes to show you that, you can always make a mistake and correct it and go back and do something better with your life."
Ironically Frank is employed by the U.S. Government --- giving seminars about check fraud prevention.
The movie is in theatres now.
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