Shot in a dozen states over the course of a year, The Two Dollar Bill Documentary was a passion project for its Director, John Bennardo, when he decided to learn more about the small stack of $2 bills he had stashed in his desk drawer. Little did he realize how much his film would grow conceptually; what started out as a history lesson with some small anecdotes and hidden camera uses of the bill became a thoroughly comprehensive story whose content was as inspirational as it was informative.
The project was legitimized when Bennardo was given permission to film the production of two dollar bills at the Bureau of Engraving and Printing in Fort Worth, Texas. Soon after, the film was mentioned in a New York Times article about the revitalization of the $2 bill. The article caught the attention of several individuals with various stories related to the $2 bill. They in turn contacted Bennardo to be a part of the film. How could he leave out Treasury employees involved in the re-issue of the $2 bill in 1976? Or, stories of the $2 bill on NASA space missions? The scope of the project grew, and Bennardo wanted to document all of it.
The project then took a full year for editing, with the most difficult task becoming how to weave all the fascinating information into a cohesive narrative. For that, Bennardo turned to his own personal story, supplemented by research data provided by interviewee Erik Mintz, to frame the film. The result is a stirring success: The Two Dollar Bill Documentary is a fun, entertaining and informative look at a piece of currency that is so much more than meets the eye. Audiences have come away surprised, not only at how the film exceeded expectations, but how much information they learned from the film. Bennardo is confident that the film will invigorate awareness and use of the denomination—or at least will have people searching for their own stashed bills for another look.
The movie is available on Amazon as well as through a DVD purchase on this site. A slightly modified version of the film is available for free on our YouTube channel.