‘Black Panther’ director Ryan Coogler mistaken for bank robber at Atlanta Bank of America branch

Credit: WSBTV Videos

Combined ShapeCaption
'Black Panther' director Ryan Coogler detained at Atlanta Bank of America

Credit: WSBTV Videos

He was briefly detained and handcuffed; Bank of America apologized.

“Black Panther” director Ryan Coogler was mistaken for a bank robber at a Bank of America branch in Atlanta in January. He was handcuffed and briefly detained.

According to the police report, Coogler, donning a hat, sunglasses and a COVID-19 mask, came up to the counter on Jan. 7 and handed the teller a withdrawal slip with a note on the back 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.”

Combined ShapeCaption
Ryan Coogler, who directed the 2018 hit 'Black Panther,' was detained at an Atlanta bank in January after a misunderstanding with a teller.

Ryan Coogler, who directed the 2018 hit 'Black Panther,' was detained at an Atlanta bank in January after a misunderstanding with a teller.

Combined ShapeCaption
Ryan Coogler, who directed the 2018 hit 'Black Panther,' was detained at an Atlanta bank in January after a misunderstanding with a teller.

The teller, identified in the police report as a Black female, misinterpreted the request and thought it was an attempted robbery. She told her boss and they contacted the police. Four Atlanta Police Department officers arrived at the bank and detained two of Coogler’s colleagues who were waiting in a car in the parking lot. They told the officers what Coogler was wearing and he was handcuffed and taken out of the bank by two officers.

Once they verified Coogler’s identity and realized this was merely a case of Coogler taking money out of his own account, they let him go.

“Mr. Coogler was never in the wrong,” the police officer wrote in the report.

Coogler told Variety magazine: “This situation should never have happened. However, Bank of America worked with me and addressed it to my satisfaction and we have moved on.”

A Bank of America spokesman informed Variety: “We deeply regret that this incident occurred. It never should have happened and we have apologized to Mr. Coogler.”

Coogler directed the first “Black Panther” in metro Atlanta and is currently shooting the sequel “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever.”

The Bank of America branch is the one on West Paces Ferry Road near OK Cafe.