A conman gets mixed up with a group of thieves who plan to rob an Istanbul museum to retrieve a jeweled dagger.

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(screenplay), (based on the novel "The Light of Day")
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Won 1 Oscar. Another 3 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
...
Jess Hahn ...
Hans Fisher
Gilles Ségal ...
Giulio the Human Fly
...
Titos Vandis ...
Harback (as Titos Wandis)
Ege Ernart ...
Maj. Ali Tufan
Senih Orkan ...
First Shadow
Ahmet Danyal Topatan ...
Second Shadow
Joe Dassin ...
Josef (as Joseph Dassin)
Despo Diamantidou ...
Voula
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Storyline

A small-time con-man with passport problems gets mixed up with a gang of world-class jewelry thieves plotting to rob the Topkapi museum in Istanbul. Turkish intelligence, suspecting arms smuggling, gets involved, and under pressure the con-man rises to heights he'd never dreamed of. Written by David Carroll <davidc@atom.ansto.gov.au>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

heist | museum | smuggling | caper | dagger | See All (63) »

Taglines:

Come on--you're cut in on the theft of the century! See more »


Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »
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Details

Official Sites:

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Language:

| | | | |

Release Date:

2 September 1964 (France)  »

Also Known As:

A Topkapi kincse  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

One of director Christopher Nolan's favorite movies. See more »

Goofs

At runtime 00:57 when Arthur pulls the couch by a rope Elizabeth sits and lays in three different positions depending on which camera shows the scene. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Elizabeth Lipp: It can be done! That's the way it can be done! Aaah... oh, excuse me; I've just had a great idea - something I've been looking for a long time... a very long time.
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Crazy Credits

At the beginning, the title and the technical credits are shown, but no credit is given to the actors or to the producer-director. However, at the end, (spoiler) we suddenly see the words "There they go again!", and all of the leading actors appear in a snowbound setting, together with their names. Then the names of all of the other actors, together with the name of the producer-director, appear on the screen. See more »

Connections

References The Captive Bird (1962) See more »

Soundtracks

The Stars and Stripes Forever
(uncredited) (1896)
Written by John Philip Sousa
Played when Elizabeth steps on Cedric's mock-up of the security platform
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Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
A fascinating guide to the jewel of the Dardanelles...

Melina Mercouri introduces herself as a thief who doesn't hide the way she feels about the most wonderful emeralds… She wants to rob a dagger encrusted with fascinating gemstones…

One of her potential partners is her former lover Maximilian Schell, a very distinguished crook who fights at his best when he fights in a corner… Schell wants to pick his crew from amateurs with no police records, and strike the most protected fortress…

Peter Ustinov won his first Best Supporting Oscar for his amusing performance as the clever middle-aged 'nobody' who could have gone far but he always plays for small stakes…

Ustinov is the victim of circumstances, caught at the Turkish border with a riffle and six grenades… For that, his mission is to spy on the spies, and report to the Turkish security everything he overhears-no matter how trivial it may seem to him… The police gives him a chance to prove that he is not a terrorist… He accepts to work with them…

With a funny toy man who proposes to get into the palace museum without touching the floor; a mute acrobat who talks with his whole body; a mad muscle man who hates a drunken cook; a showman with no problems at the customs border; plus Islamic mosques; ancient streets; colorful bazaars; oiled wrestlers; talented belly dancers; and fable roofs; "Topkapi" overlooks both the Sea of Marmara and the Bosphorus, offering bright moments with a final suspense sequence in the 'Rififi' manner…


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