“Black Panther” director Ryan Coogler, one of America’s most successful filmmakers, was falsely detained after a Bank of America teller mistook him for a bank robber, a newly released body-cam video shows.
The troubling incident happened in January in Atlanta, where Coogler has been filming the sequel to “.” He was approached by police minutes after passing a note to a teller asking her to be discreet over a money withdrawal.
“Hey, sir do me a favor. Come this way,” an officer was heard saying in the video.
Both of the officers drew their weapons before placing handcuffs on a surprised Coogler, the video shows. They were there responding to a possible bank robbery in progress.
According to the police report, Coogler had passed a withdrawal slip to the teller with a note written on the back, asking her for discretion when handing him $12,000 in cash. After being cuffed, he was escorted to a squad car outside the bank.
Coogler, who also directed the 2013 film “Fruitvale Station,” was heard asking police to Google his name.
“If you run my name, you’ll understand why you should take off these cuffs,” he told officers while being held against the car.
From the backseat of the police vehicle, Coogler explained he was trying not to call attention to himself in withdrawing such a large amount of cash.
“If I don’t write out on a note how much I want out, and that I don’t want it ran through the money counter right at the desk, the whole bank ends up looking at me,” he told police.
Coogler was uncuffed minutes later.
In a statement to CBS News, a Bank of America spokesperson said: “We deeply regret that this incident occurred. It never should have happened and we have apologized to Mr. Coogler.”
Through a representative, Coogler told CBS News: “This situation should never have happened. However, Bank of America worked with me and addressed it to my satisfaction and we have moved on.”