Jesse Baget’s "Cellmates" (originally titled “White Knight”) was one of my top picks at this year’s Arizona Underground Film Festival – and the biggest surprise of the fest simply because when I read the feature’s synopsis in the program my first thought was there’s no way this film would work. When one sees the phrase “buddy comedy” the names Tom Sizemore and Stacy Keach just don’t come to mind. Add in Héctor Jiménez of “Nacho Libre” and we might be getting closer…but still. Sizemore as a former Klansman meets Keach as a potato-obsessed warden meets Jiménez as an activist immigrant laborer (set in a Texas prison) sounds like a recipe for disaster. So it’s a testament to the sharp talent of Tucson-native Jesse Baget and his co-screenwriter Stefania Moscato that “Cellmates” not only shines as a hilarious comedy, it doubles as a sweet-natured satire on racism. I chatted with Baget shortly after I covered the Santa Fe Independent Film Festival, where “Cellmates" was once again met with enthusiastic applause.
To read my interview visit Filmmaker magazine.