Cast and crew of 'The Banker' defend movie after Apple delays release

Ben ArnoldContributor
The Banker (Credit: Apple)
The Banker (Credit: Apple)

The cast and crew of new movie The Banker have signed a letter defending accusations that the movie is inaccurate.

Last week, Apple, the movie's producers, abruptly shelved its premiere, after the son of one of the movie's subjects was accused of sexual abuse.

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Cynthia Garrett, the daughter of Bernard Garrett – portrayed in the movie by Anthony Mackie – claimed that her half brother, Bernard Garrett Jr, molested her and her sister over several years in the 1970s.

Read more: Apple pulls The Banker premiere

Garrett Jr had been involved in the movie's promotion, and recently stepped down as one of the film's producers.

Cheryl Garrett has also claimed that the film's timeline is also inaccurate, though the filmmakers are now saying - via Variety - that it is based on interviews with Garrett Snr, and various other transcripts and court rulings.

Nicholas Hoult, Samuel L. Jackson and Anthony Mackie in The Banker (Credit: Apple)
Nicholas Hoult, Samuel L. Jackson and Anthony Mackie in The Banker (Credit: Apple)

The movie hinges on the story of Garrett and businessman Joe Morris, played by Samuel L. Jackson, who in the 1950s employed Matt Steiner, a young white man (played by Nicholas Hoult) as a front their burgeoning real estate business.

The letter reads: “We set out to tell a story we were very passionate about, recounting the remarkable lives of Bernard Garrett Sr and Joe Morris, and their ground-breaking achievements combating racial inequality in the 1950s and 60s.

“Though we have no way of knowing what may have transpired between Mr. Garrett’s children in the 1970s, including the allegations of abuse we have recently been made aware of, our hearts go out to anyone who has suffered.

Read more: Protests in Paris over new Polanski movie

“The film itself is not based on the recollections of any of Bernard Garrett Sr’s children, but rather, on recorded interviews with Bernard Garrett Sr himself, conducted in 1995, supported by congressional transcripts, court rulings, and other media articles from the era. We stand by the film, and its positive message of empowerment.”

It's signed by the writer and director George Nolfi, as well as Jackson, Mackie, Hoult, and other stars including Colm Meaney and Nia Long, as well all the film's producers, writers and other crew-members from props to director of photography Charlotte Bruus Christensen.

Prior to the accusation from Cynthia Garrett, Apple had primed the movie for an awards season release.

It was planned for release on December 6, with streaming on Apple TV Plus in January. No new release date has been announced.

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