The Banker shows how black businessmen challenged racist real estate laws

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Apple's first original film The Banker
Apple's original film The Banker hits theaters in December.
Photo: Apple

The first trailer for Apple original film The Banker showcases the shrewd financial moves of two black entrepreneurs who took on racist real estate laws in the Jim Crow era.

Based on a true story, the film stars Samuel L. Jackson and Anthony Mackie as ambitious businessmen who used a clever scheme to shake up the establishment in the 1950s.

In The Banker, Apple’s first original film out of the gate, Joe Morris (played by Jackson) and Bernard Garrett (Mackie) move from Los Angeles to Texas to open two banks. They hire a white man, Matt Steiner (Nicholas Hoult), as the face of the business to circumvent racist real estate practices of the time.

Joe and Bernard train the inexperienced Matt to act as a believable businessman. Meanwhile, they pose as a chauffeur and janitor — and secretly oversee operations. When their bank provides loans to African Americans, it raises the suspicion of government regulators.

The highly anticipated original film, which is directed by George Nolfi, also stars Nia Long, Colm Meaney and Jessie Usher.

See The Banker trailer

The Banker is part of Cupertino’s ambitious slate of original content for Apple TV+, the streaming video service that launched last week. The movie makes its debut on Nov. 21 at the American Film Institute Festival in Hollywood, then heads to theaters on Dec. 6. The strategic theatrical release will make the film eligible for the industry’s award season.

The Banker comes to Apple TV+ on Jan. 31, 2020.