As movies go this one was just flat out funny and even more so it was funny because it was essentially Steve Martin vs. Michael Caine. Now at this point a lot of us might not have known that Caine could do comedy, but Martin had already proven that he was more than capable of making us laugh. The fact that the film pit the two against one another and then had them work together was an absolute pleasure since it brought us some of the greatest scenes in film history. What was even better was the scene at the end in which you get to find out that the woman they were both trying to con had been running a scam on them all along.
In a game where the stakes are high and you can’t trust anybody it’s best to never let your guard down, especially for a pretty face.
10. The woman dancing next to Caine in the disco is his real daughter.
Her name is Natasha and she was the girl with the long, straight black hair. It might have been a chance for her to get in on the same business as her father.
9. The scene in which Steve Martin poses with the women in bikinis was shot twice.
One shot was with their bikinis on for the American version, while the other was with them off for the European version.
8. Caine was nominated for a Golden Globe for this movie but Martin wasn’t.
This came as something of a surprise to people since Steve Martin was considered to be just as much of contributor to the movie.
7. The jail scene with Freddy was mostly improv.
He had to keep coming up with things to say to finish out the scene and eventually the director had to bring a halt to it.
6. Caine and Martin ad-libbed a lot throughout the movie.
Obviously they could feed off of one another in a way that allowed for natural, flowing dialogue that didn’t need the script that much.
5. The film almost had a different title.
The titles King of the Mountain and Dirty Rotten Criminals were two such titles that were being considered.
4. Only a teaser trailer was released.
There were full-length trailers made but the director didn’t like them so they didn’t get released. Unfortunately the teaser featured a scene that wasn’t in the movie.
3. Steve Martin got top billing.
This could explain at least in part why he didn’t get nominated for that Golden Globe award, but not entirely.
2. Eddie Murphy was almost cast as Freddie.
It probably would have been just as funny but during this time Murphy was also pretty busy with projects a lot of the time.
1. It was the first Frank Oz film that didn’t feature puppets.
Normally his films would feature a wide variety of puppets such as were seen in The Dark Tower, Little Shop of Horrors, and Muppets in Manhattan.
It was one of the funnier movies of its era but it was woefully underrated.