Black Panther director Ryan Coogler was briefly detained by police in Atlanta in January after he was mistaken for a bank robber, video footage released by Atlanta police on Wednesday (Mar 9) shows.
Coogler, 35, was detained by police before being released on Jan 7 after he went to Bank of America to make a transaction, according to a report from Variety.
“From we got the call, sounded like someone was trying to rob the bank,” one of the officers says in the bodycam footage.
The director handed the bank 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 Variety report said.
The bank teller misinterpreted the situation as an attempted robbery when the transaction amount exceeded US$10,000 and informed her boss, Variety reported.
“This situation should never have happened,” Coogler said in a statement to The New York Times, but he added that Bank of America “worked with me and addressed it to my satisfaction and we have moved on”.
“We deeply regret that this incident occurred. It should never have happened and we have apologised to Mr Coogler,” a statement from Bank of America says.
Black Panther became the second-highest grossing movie at box offices worldwide in 2018, heralded for its vibrant celebration of African culture and applauded as a milestone for racial diversity in Hollywood.
The film was nominated for six Oscars, including best picture. It won three Academy Awards – in the best original score, best costume design and best production design categories.
While the director is best known for Black Panther, he also co-wrote the Rocky spinoff Creed. His breakout movie was writing and directing Fruitvale Station, about the last day of Oscar Grant, who was fatally shot by police in the Bay Area in 2009.