Los Angeles, March 9 The celebrated ‘Black Panther’ director, Ryan Coogler, who has been on the ‘Time 100’ list of the most influential people of 2018, was detained by the police in Atlanta back in January after he was mistaken for a bank robber at a Bank of America branch.
The director confirmed the incident to ‘Variety’. “This situation should never have happened,” he said, adding that “Bank of America worked with me and addressed it to my satisfaction and we have moved on.”
The news was broken by TMZ, based on a police report. It said Coogler was detained after he went to Bank of America to make a transaction.
The 35-year-old director, who was wearing a hat, sunglasses and a COVID face mask, went to the counter and handed the teller a withdrawal slip with a note written on the back that reportedly read, “I would like to withdraw $12,000 cash from my checking account. Please do the money count somewhere else. I’d like to be discreet.”
The teller, however, misinterpreted the situation as an attempted robbery when the amount of the transaction triggered an alarm on the banking system. The teller then informed her boss and together they called the police.
Authorities arriving at the scene reportedly detained two people in an SUV who were waiting for Coogler outside the bank, and also handcuffed the director.
A Bank of America spokesperson told ‘Variety’: “We deeply regret that this incident occurred. It never should have happened and we have apologised to Mr Coogler.”
The director, who is regarded as one of the brightest young talents of Hollywood, has been filming the sequel to the superhero tentpole, ‘Black Panther: Wakanda Forever’, in Atlanta. The film is set for release in November.