Making Bank

Over the last few decades, North Carolina has become the second largest banking center in the United States. It trails just behind the mecca of finance, New York City. The hour-long documentary film, Making Bank, tells the story of this improbable rise. Fittingly, the film’s title draws on the idiom defined as “hitting the jackpot by acquiring a significant amount of money in a short period of time.”

Currently in development by FilmNC Capital Management, the story begins in the 1950s and will take the audience to today when these banks are no longer underdogs, but the behemoths against which they were always competing, with all the new problems and threats that exalted position creates. The viewer will get a rare glimpse into a history that is virtually unknown, an industry that is often misunderstood and maligned, and a narrative that has consequences that go far beyond banking.
Making Bank will look at the dynamics of ‒ and the colorful characters associated with ‒ formative banks that became North Carolina’s largest. These include First Citizens, Wachovia, First Union (now merged with Wachovia) and NCNB (later to become Bank of America). Also examined are the supporting roles of the then-smaller banks across the state, such as Branch Banking and Trust (BB&T), now merged as Truist and ranked by assets as the 10th largest bank in the country.
Viewers of Making Bank will learn of the intriguing ingredients that set the table for the South’s meteoric fiscal ascent. Those ingredients include leadership and vision; legislative and regulatory changes; and the impact of historic social upheavals ― all of which contributed to transforming the character, personality and culture of the Tar Heel state.

Within this fascinating story, viewers will learn in a most entertaining fashion how a primarily rural, agrarian state ‒ with few urban centers of any significance ‒ forever changed America’s banking landscape!