In Now You See Me, when Morgan Freeman explains to the detective on how the Four Horseman robbed the bank, he mentions that they replaced the real money (while in the secured transport truck) with flash paper.

This does not explain how the paper in the bank got ignited, and no ignition/stimulator left in the scene as evidence.

Who/What/When ignited the flash paper in the bank on time?

  • There had to be some timer/delay mechanism on the platform, or something similar - but in the frames we see - there is nothing.
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    I've not seen this yet, the only place we avoid spoilers is the title. Is there any way you can update this question so you don't give away the fact there is fake money involved?
    – Liath
    Commented Sep 4, 2013 at 11:23
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    @Liath I tried to update the Q. sorry for the spoiler. feel free to edit as you see fit
    – Saariko
    Commented Sep 4, 2013 at 11:28
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    You don't need to mention spoilers as that's implied so I've taken that out. Obviously I don't know how relevant your new title is as I've not read the question or seen the film!
    – Liath
    Commented Sep 4, 2013 at 11:44
  • @ChristianRau Don't know why you rolled that back as the title suggests that the question is about how they pulled off the whole robbery, when it's really just about how they managed to ignite the "flash paper"
    – Tom
    Commented Sep 4, 2013 at 12:09
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    Got there eventually ;-)
    – Liath
    Commented Sep 4, 2013 at 12:36

1 Answer 1


Flash Paper ignites into a brilliant flame when touched by a lighter, match or any extreme heat source.

So he could have concealed a lighter, heat device into his palm like he did with the red wine.

As for the paper money in the bank, The bank was already closed. So it wasn't necessary that the paper money was ignited at the same moment while the stage show was being done. It simply had to be ignited after the bank had closed down. What is not shown is how they managed to burn up the money - what was the source of ignition.

The only thing left there was the show ticket. We can see when the paper starts burning that there is something in the center that starts the ignition. Maybe it was hidden in the platform. enter image description here

  • Agree, the flash paper did not hve to get burnt during the show. But sometime, after the platform was in the safe, it got ignited somehow.
    – Saariko
    Commented Sep 4, 2013 at 10:35
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    must have been a slow burning chemical or something. The intention was that the heat source or ignition should have been delayed until after the vault was closed. So could have been some chemical reaction or a timer. Commented Sep 4, 2013 at 12:05
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    They must have used some pretty good flash paper! As a magician I use flash paper quite a lot, and when burnt in contact with something it leaves a slight residue. I would not expect the pallet to be as clean and shiny as shown in the screenshot!
    – Rob
    Commented Sep 10, 2013 at 11:35
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    they showed some burnt up residue being whisked away by the air circulation vents Commented Sep 10, 2013 at 13:40
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    @Saariko You can see it in this video
    – DasBeasto
    Commented Sep 28, 2015 at 21:59

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