Apple has not publicly disclosed why it canceled the planned premiere of its film “The Banker,” but it did so less than a week after one of the film’s producers, who is also the son of the film’s subject, was publicly accused of sexual assault by one of his half sisters.
And on Wednesday night, the Hollywood Reporter reported that Bernard Garrett Jr., whose father Bernard Garrett is portrayed by Anthony Mackie in the film and who until recently was credited as a co-producer, has been accused of sexual assault by both of his half sisters.
“The Banker” was originally scheduled to premiere as the closing film of the 2019 AFI Festival in Los Angeles, but the screening was abruptly canceled Wednesday afternoon. Apple did not disclose the reason for doing so, saying in a statement only that “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. In light of this, we are no longer premiering ‘The Banker’ at AFI Fest.”
But the move came just 5 days after Garrett Jr.’s half sister, Cynthia Garrett, tweeted that the film “LIES TO HIDE THE PRODUCER WHO SEXUALLY MOLESTED MY SISTER AND I FOR YEARS THEN STOLE MY MOMS LIFE STORY WITH OUR DAD.” And according to THR, Cynthia and her sister, Sheila Garrett, told Apple approximately a week ago that Garrett Jr. molested them over a period of several years in the early 1970s, when they were little girls.
The sisters spoke to THR, and said that the film misrepresented the timeline of real life events so that they and their mother were left out of the story entirely. “This entire project is poisoned. It’s the fruit of crime, lies and deception,” Cynthia Garret told THR.
RELATED: "The Banker" star Anthony Mackie
LONDON, ENGLAND - APRIL 26: Anthony Mackie arrives for the European film premiere of 'Captain America: Civil War' at Vue Westfield on April 26, 2016 in London, England (Photo by Karwai Tang/WireImage)
LONDON, ENGLAND - APRIL 26: Anthony Mackie arrives for UK film premiere 'Captain America: Civil War' at Vue Westfield on April 26, 2016 in London, England (Photo by Mike Marsland/Mike Marsland/WireImage)
LONDON, ENGLAND - APRIL 25: Anthony Mackie attends a photocall for 'Captain America: Civil War' at Corinthia Hotel London on April 25, 2016 in London, England. (Photo by Dave J Hogan/Dave J Hogan/Getty Images)
US actor Anthony Mackie poses on the red carpet arriving for the European Premiere of the film Captain America: Civil War in London on April 26, 2016 / AFP / ADRIAN DENNIS (Photo credit should read ADRIAN DENNIS/AFP/Getty Images)
SINGAPORE - APRIL 21: American actor Anthony Mackie attends the Southeast Asia press conference of Marvel's 'Captain America: Civil War' at Marina Bay Sands on April 21, 2016 in Singapore. (Photo by Yong Teck Lim/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - APRIL 12: Actor Anthony Mackie arrives at the premiere of Marvel's 'Captain America: Civil War' on April 12, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Gregg DeGuire/WireImage)
US actor Anthony Mackie poses as he arrives to the 2016 Vanity Fair Oscar Party in Beverly Hills, California on February 28, 2016. / AFP / ADRIAN SANCHEZ-GONZALEZ (Photo credit should read ADRIAN SANCHEZ-GONZALEZ/AFP/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 27: Actor Anthony Mackie arrives at the 2016 Film Independent Spirit Awards on February 27, 2016 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Jon Kopaloff/FilmMagic)
SANTA MONICA, CA - FEBRUARY 27: Actor Anthony Mackie attends 2016 Film Independent Spirit Awards on February 27, 2016 in Santa Monica, California. (Photo by David Livingston/Getty Images)
SANTA MONICA, CA - FEBRUARY 27: Actor Anthony Mackie attends the 2016 Film Independent Spirit Awards on February 27, 2016 in Santa Monica, California. (Photo by Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic)
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Apple did not immediately respond to a request for comment from TheWrap. Cynthia Garrett also did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Romulus Entertainment, which co-produced the film, also did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Attempts to contact Bernard Garrett Jr. were unsuccessful.
The drama starring Mackie and Samuel L. Jackson is based on the true story of two real estate investors and businessmen, Bernard Garrett (Mackie) and Joe Morris (Jackson), who managed to buy banks and homes in all-white neighborhoods and loan it back to black people looking to find their own American dream in a still segregated world that made that dream difficult. Nicholas Hoult co-stars in the film as the white man the duo hired to be their stand-in for business deals with white bankers.
George Nolfi directs the drama written by Niceole Levy, Nolfi, David Lewis Smith and Stan Younger from a story by David Lewis Smith, Stan Younger and Brad Caleb Kane.