Director Ryan Coogler says he's 'disappointed' in Georgia voting restrictions but will continue to film 'Black Panther II' in the state despite a massive boycott

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Taylor Ardrey
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ryan coogler
Ryan Coogler attends the 10th Annual AAFCA Awards on Feb. 6, 2019, in Los Angeles Phil McCarten/Invision/AP, File

Ryan Coogler, director of "Black Panther," explained decision why he will continue to film the sequel in Georgia amid the new voting restrictions that impact Black and people of color.

"As an African-American, and as a citizen, I oppose all attempts, explicit and otherwise, to shrink the electorate and reduce access to the ballot," Coogler wrote in the column published by Deadline, adding that he lived in Atlanta, Georgia while filming a previous movie.

The new voting law, SB202, which was signed by Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp in March, has a provision that bars volunteers from providing food and beverages to voters waiting in line, Insider previously reported. The law was met with great criticism from activists voting rights organizations and Democrats including President Joe Biden who called it"Jim Crow for the 21st Century."

Coogler said he was "profoundly disappointed" about SB202 and "its ramifications for the state's voters."

"While I wished to turn my concern into action, I could not do so without first being educated on the specifics of Georgia. Having now spoken with voting rights activists in the state, I have come to understand that many of the people employed by my film, including all the local vendors and businesses we engage, are the very same people who will bear the brunt of SB202," Coogler added.

Major companies like Coca-Cola and Delta have spoken out against the law and recently, actor Will Smith and director Antoine Fuqua pulled production for his new film "Emancipation" from Georgia due to the GOP-backed law.

Coogler wrote that although he is not participating in a boycott against the state, he will utilize his platform to fight against suppression for those affected by the bill which he echoed has "shameful roots in Jim Crow." The film director said that he will also donate to Fair Fight Action, a voting rights organization founded by Stacey Abrams, who has been vocal about her opposition to the bill.

"Additionally, I have made a personal commitment to raise awareness about ways to help overturn this harmful bill, and continue to get educated on this matter from people on the ground," Coogler wrote. "I will encourage everyone working with me to tap in with the local community directly affected by Senate Bill 202 and to leverage their influence and resources to aid in the fight for this particular and essential pillar of democracy."

Read the original article on Insider