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The Banker Premiere Gets Canceled Amid Sexual Abuse Allegations

The AFI Film Festival premiere of Apple TV+’s The Banker–the first major original film for the new streaming platform starring Samuel L. Jackson and Anthony Mackie–has been canceled.

In a statement shared with the Hollywood Reporter on Wednesday night, an Apple rep explained how the film landed in their control before ultimately pausing the rollout paused, citing “concerns” over problems they were informed of just last week.

“We purchased The Banker earlier this year as we were moved by the film’s entertaining and educational story about social change and financial literacy,” an Apple rep said about the film, which is based on a true story. “Last week some concerns surrounding the film were brought to our attention. We, along with the filmmakers, need some time to look into these matters and determine the best next steps.”

The film is inspired by the true story of Bernard Garrett, a black man who enlisted a white man to pose as the face of a real estate and banking empire. In the film, Anthony Mackie portrays Garrett, while Samuel L. Jackson takes on the role of his business partner Joe Morris.

According to reports from THR, the half-sisters of Garrett’s son—Bernard Garrett Jr.—recently made Apple aware that Garrett Jr. allegedly “sexually molested them over the course of a few years,” starting in the early 1970s. They go on to allege that the film’s timeline was altered to keep them and their mother out, choosing only to include a depiction of Garrett Sr.’s first wife.

Garrett Jr. has since reportedly stepped down from his role as a producer on the film along with having been removed from publicity materials and previously planned appearances promoting the movie’s release.

Initially, The Banker was planned to have a theatrical release starting December 6 before hitting the recently launched Apple TV+ the following month.

Now, the whole thing is kinda up in the air.

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