Cedar Rapids Man Making Props for Major Motion Pictures

By Forrest Saunders, KCRG-TV9

CEDAR RAPIDS — Making movie props for an upcoming Steven Spielberg film, that’s what one Cedar Rapids engineer has been doing in his spare time the last few weeks.

Seventy-six-year-old Francis Lebeda has been working on turning a U.S. nickel into a prop for an untitled film that’s rumored to be directed by Spielberg and star Tom Hanks.

The movie is based on the Cold War spy book Strangers on a Bridge.

According to the book, the coin was hollowed out and used to conceal microfilm.

While laboring on a small coin for weeks may seem like work, Lebeda said think again.

“It’s all magic. It’s fun. It takes the monotony of a day’s work out. That’s why I come in at night and I can work for two three hours,” Lebeda said.

This is the fourth film Lebeda said he’s worked on. Others include Miles from Home, The Final Season, and Gangs of New York.

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