According to a report from The Hollywood Reporter, Apple canceled the release of The Banker following allegations of sexual molestation against Bernard Garrett Junior. The half-sisters of the co-producer accused Garrett Junior of abusing them for several years.
Initially, The Banker was supposed to come out in limited theaters on the 6th of December shortly before getting its start on the Apple TV+ streaming service in January of next year. As a consequence of the theatrical delay, Apple postponed the premiere of its streaming date.
Earlier in the week, Apple canceled the film’s premiere at the AFI Festival in Hollywood following the reports from The Hollywood Reporter regarding Bernard Garrett Junior. Garrett Junior is the son of one of the leading characters in the movie, portrayed by the star, Anthony Mackie.
Supposedly, the movie is based on the life story of Bernard Garrett Senior and Joe Morris, the two men who hired a white man to be the face of their growing real estate business approximately six decades ago- before the Civil Rights Act.
Reportedly, Garrett Junior’s half-sisters, who are 15 years younger than him, claimed that he molested them when he lived in their home many years ago. Following the allegations of sexual misconduct against him at the time, much of the promotional material using his name was eliminated.
Directed by the filmmaker, George Nolfi, he claims the movie was purchased by Apple in July. The company was determined to have the movie up for awards and released in theaters as well so that it could qualify for Oscars and Golden Globes.
Earlier this week, Apple released a statement in which they said they purchased The Banker and were captivated by its plotline which revolved around “financial literacy” as well as “social change.”
Apple said in the same statement that they were reconsidering their next steps, and would also have to pull the film from the AFI Fest. This wouldn’t be the first time a movie was postponed due to controversy. The Hunt was reportedly canceled due to the increase in mass shootings over the last decade.