Ryan Coogler, who’s currently directing Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, was detained by police in Atlanta earlier this year after he was mistakenly thought to be robbing a Bank Of America.
This was first reported by TMZ on March 9, but the situation reportedly occurred back in January. In a police report obtained by the tabloid, it’s detailed that Coogler attempted to make a hefty transaction at the bank. Instead of speaking to the teller and letting her know how much money he wanted to withdraw, he slipped her a note that 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.”
It’s a reasonable request from a rich and famous filmmaker who’s currentlly working on Marvel Studio’s most-anticipated film of the year. But the teller mistakenly thought it was a robbery when the amount of the transaction reportedly triggered a bank system alert (the police reports note the woman is Black, but her identity has not been confirmed yet). She alerted her boss, telling them that she believed Coogler was attempting to rob the bank, and they called 911.
TMZ also reports that when the police arrived at the scene, they detained two people who were waiting for Coogler outside in an SUV, and then arrested Coogler. Coogler was let go as soon as the cops realized who he was.
In a statement to Variety, a spokesperson from Bank Of America says, “We deeply regret that this incident occurred. It never should have happened and we have apologized to Mr. Coogler.”
Coogler also gave a statement to both TMZ and Variety, saying, “This situation should never have happened. However, Bank of America worked with me and addressed it to my satisfaction and we have moved on.”