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‘The Banker’: Two Black Men Build an Empire in the Jim Crow Era

In 1954, in America, a black man owning a bank was something unattainable and seemed practically impossible but for Bernard Garrett (Anthony Mackie) anything was possible. Bernard was smart and ambitious and would stop at nothing to make his American dream come true. His dream was for black people to have access to capital for their businesses and have access to home loans to invest in real estate. Bernard knew the importance of ownership and was dedicated to educating his community and helping pave the way. He was an innovator and truly ahead of his time. He had the knowledge, he had the ambition. The only problem was…he was black.

Bernard had to find a way to get over this hurdle and use his talents to provide a better life for his wife Eunice (Nia Long) and their son. Eunice introduced Bernard to club owner, real estate investor and future partner Joe Morris (Samuel L Jackson). Joe had more experience in real estate along with money and connections that Bernard needed. The two didn’t really hit it off when they first met but they eventually got on the same page about their vision. Bernard met a young white man named Matt Steiner (Nicholas Hoult) who knew nothing about real estate or banking but was the perfect face to get his goal accomplished. Together, Bernard and Joe taught Matt everything he needed to know to impress the real estate moguls and investment bankers – math, finance, and even golf. Once Matt was ready, they made their first big purchase – a building that held all major banks in Downtown Los Angeles. Bernard and Joe have done the unimaginable.

THE BANKER / APPLE TV+

The duo got busy purchasing many more properties in white neighborhoods to help black people move into better areas of the city. With all the success they had in Los Angeles, Bernard thought he could try his luck in his small hometown in Texas. Things, however, did not go as planned as in the South they faced even more racism and segregation. Again, with Matt’s help, they were able to purchase two more banks in Texas. As soon as they took ownership, the duo started to quickly lend money to black home- and business owners. The number of loans that Matt approved in such a short time made other bankers suspicious and the bank was audited. In the process of the audit their scheme was uncovered, and Bernard and Joe’s identities were revealed. The banks were shut down by the Feds and both black men were sentenced to three years in jail. They only served nine months for mishandling bank funds and fraud.

Although Bernard and Joe did time in jail, at the end of it all, there is a silver lining to this story – these black men made history and beat the odds by purchasing two banks in the United States in the Jim Crow Era. The Banker is an eye-opening story of courage and hope; it is an important part of history that is relatively unknown. Two black men generations before us had the vision and enough courage to pursue their dream. All of this was done to advance the lives of black people in America. This is a tale of two heroes that was long overdue. This story is an amazing gem in American history and an inspiration to all.

The Banker is now available for streaming on AppleTV+.

Film

‘The Tomorrow War’ Trailer: First Look At Edwin Hodge, Sam Richardson and Jasmine Mathews In Chris Pratt’s New Sci-Fi Film (Video)

Amazon has released the first trailer for its upcoming sci-fi thriller The Tomorrow War, premiering July 2.

The movie stars Chris Pratt as Dan Forester, a teacher who joins a group of time travelers to fight a war 30 years in the future. Dan teams up with his estranged father (played by J.K. Simmons), and a scientist (Yvonne Strahovski), to help save the planet.

Helmed by Chris McKay, the film’s cast also includes Edwin Hodge as Dorian, Sam Richardson as Charlie, Jasmine Mathews as Lieutenant Hart, and Keith Powers as Major Greenwood.

Amazon reportedly paid $200 million to distribute the film.

Watch the teaser trailer below:

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Lauren London Talks Filming ‘Without Remorse’ Opposite Michael B. Jordan: “We Did Have Very Open Conversations About Grief”

The movie marks the actress’s first ever role in an action film.

Lauren London is stepping into a new movie genre. The ATL actress is starring in Amazon’s upcoming action-thriller Without Remorse alongside Michael B. Jordan and Jodie Turner-Smith.

As much as this is an action flick, Without Remorse is also a love story where an elite navy seal John Clark and his wife Pam are very much in love and expecting their first child together. John’s world turns upside down when Pam is killed. While seeking justice for the murder of his wife, the soldier uncovers a covert plot that threatens to engulf the United States and Russia in a war.

The pain that comes from losing his loved one fuels John’s journey throughout the movie. It is, coincidentally, also something London personally is very familiar with.

During a press conference with the cast and the director Stefano Sollima, London spoke about the candid conversations she and her scene partner had during filming and how she applied her personal experience to the role. “I think that you bring your life experience to your art. I always loved artists that worked like that, so I try to do my best, to be honest in that way. And I think being a mother, and a partner; experiencing love to the degree that I was able to experience it – I brought that tenderness and vulnerability to the character.” She also said, “[Michael and I] did have very open coversations about grief and just what it feels like to lose someone so tragically and so soon. I think those conversations really helped the movement of our characters and their relationship.”

“We did have very open conversations about grief and just what it feels like to lose someone tragically and so soon”

When Jordan, who is also one of the executive producers, initially reached out to London to offer the role, she did not get on board right there and then. The decision required critical reflection, as she was grieving her boyfriend and the father of her son, rapper Nipsey Hussle. “I didn’t say ‘yes’ right away because I wasn’t sure if acting was what I was gonna continue, I wasn’t sure if I was ready. I had to make sure that the next thing I was doing was in alignment with my purpose and in alignment with my truth. And after reading the script, I knew that I could be a real contributor to the role,” She told HM.

Watch our full interview with Lauren London below and make sure to check her out in Without Remorse on Amazon Prime Video on April 30!

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Jodie Turner-Smith Talks Filming ‘Without Remorse’ While Pregnant and Starring Opposite Michael B. Jordan

The actress was in her second trimester while shooting the film

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The premiere date for Paramount Pictures’ upcoming film Without Remorse is fast approaching.

Based on the 1993 novel of the same name by Tom Clancy, this action-packed experience stars Michael B. Jordan, Lauren London, and Jodie Turner-Smith. It already sounds like a hit if you ask me!

Earlier this month, the cast and director, Stefano Sollima, held a virtual press conference where they spoke about the film and what it took to finally bring it before the audience.

In that conversation, Smith reflected on her unique experience of working on set while carrying her first child.

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