WHO IS TJ?

I'm a Life Coach with a Goon Hand and I'm about to Change Your Life.

I spent some time locked up but that won't stop me from bringing you knowledge. I learned from These Streets University. No matter where you are in life or what you're looking to do, TJ can change your outlook, your approach, and help find you success.

 

TIJUANA JACKSON: PURPOSE OVER PRISON

In Theaters July 24 & On Demand July 31

 

 

SYNOPSIS SHORT

Tijuana Jackson (ROMANY MALCO) is a man determined to move beyond his checkered past and achieve his ambition of becoming a world renowned motivational speaker. When asked to be the subject of a 10 minute student film, TJ leaps at the opportunity. 10 minutes turns into 10 hours, and 10 hours become 10 life altering days of courage and inspiration.  Determined to be more than a statistic with a pipe dream, TJ stops at nothing to earn the respect of his family, and crush (REGINA HALL), who is currently his probation officer, by becoming the success story they claimed he’d never be. With film crew in tow, Tijuana Jackson takes us on the ride of our lives in this laugh out loud comedy.  Running from his past, he collides with his future and steps on every toe in the room as he does. Dropping golden nuggets of wisdom along the way, TJ attempts to master the art of achieving success by getting out of his own way!

ADDITIONAL SYNOPSES

TIJUANA JACKSON: (Romany Malco) is embarking on a life-altering journey with hopes of becoming a world-renowned motivational speaker and Life Coach with student filmmakers in tow documenting each decision every step of the way. 

With nowhere to go TJ moves back home to live with his holy roller mother, Momma Jackson (Lynn Odum) and discovers his sister, Sharea (Tami Roman) and nephew, Lil' Eric, played by Alkoya Brunson, have also moved back home and taken over his bedroom.  Determined to change and become a role model for his nephew,  Tijuana Jackson puts his plan into action with a little marketing advice from his nephew. However, his no-nonsense probation officer and former girlfriend, Cheryl Wagner (Regina Hall) has other plans. She believes TJ has potential but is also determined that he does not repeat any of his past mistakes, plus she has promised Momma Jackson to keep him on the straight and narrow. 

TJ uses knowledge gained from his life, mistakes, and all to use as a Life Coach to help anyone who will listen.  Hilarious, insightful, and empathetic, TJ is surprisingly disarming - a man like every other who is trying to make something better of his life.  He is the underdog we all know as a friend, family member or we may even see some of ourselves in TJ. 

The film is headlined by Romany Malco - based on his unapologetic, irreverent, raw, comedic alter ego TIJUANA JACKSON. Regina Hall (“Little, Girl’s Trip”, “Think Like a Man”), who plays Cheryl, TJ's no-nonsense, yet caring, probation officer / love interest.  Tami Roman (“Basketball Wives”) plays TJ's sister, Sharea.  Alkoya Brunson (“Almost Christmas”), plays TJ's nephew, Lil Eric.  And Baadja-Lyne Odoms (“The Lady Killers”) plays TJ's mother, Momma Jackson.  Tijuana Jackson  will have you roaring with laughter, rooting for his success and sighing with relief when he evades sticky situations.  In the end, it’s a film with heart and a positive message that audiences are craving at the moment. Not only to laugh, but to be moved.

The film was written and directed by Romany Malco, based on an original character Romany created named Tijuana Jackson (TJ) who preaches out a social message about purpose, self-empowerment and community.

TIJUANA JACKSON: PURPOSE OVER PRISON was produced by Josh Etting, Brian Etting & Romany Malco.

 

DIRECTOR’S STATEMENT

I created this YouTube character to reach a demographic that much of America has written off as detriments to society, losers and outcasts.

 I did not expect Tijuana Jackson’s YouTube channel to gain the Universal appeal that it did. Nor did I expect a full page write up in the New York Times. After thousands of DMs thanking this fictional character for his lessons, humor and insight I realized there were millions of people from all over the world who saw value in Tijuana Jackson’s Prison Logic, and that is what inspired this film.

My producers, Brian and Josh Etting were the first to speak of a Tijuana Jackson feature film but obtaining financing for this type of character proved impossible. So, Tijuana Jackson’s fanbase decided to finance the film themselves, hence the birth of Tijuana Jackson: Purpose Over Prison.

My goal with “Tijuana Jackson: Purpose Over Prison” is to redefine success as we know it and teach others that monetary gain, social status and the acquisition of things mean nothing without purpose.

My hope is that this film helps explain how these three components of "traditional success" are all synonymous with debt and only offer temporary gratification.

As suggested in “Man’s Search for Meaning” by Viktor Frankl (author and survivor of an Auschwitz concentration camp), it is through servicing others that we find our greatest sense of fulfillment. This is a lesson that our main character, Tijuana Jackson learns along his journey throughout the “Purpose Over Prison” mockumentary.

“Tijuana Jackson: Purpose Over Prison” is most celebrated for its ability to fuse humor with profound life lessons. So, rather than large set pieces and visual effects, we focused heavily on relationships, emotional nuances and the subtle psychological impairments of our lead characters to capture the essence of this comedic tale in a cost effective manner.

Thanks to technology, an amazing cast and a savvy production team we were able to create a micro-budgeted comedy which has potential for mass appeal. We hope the world enjoys the story as much as we enjoyed the process.

—Romany Malco

 

 

 

FILMMAKER & CAST BIOS

Romany Malco

Actor, writer, director and producer Romany Malco redefines what it means to be a chameleon and multi-hyphenate with his diverse skill set and wide-ranging talent in both comedy and drama.

Malco wrote, produced, directed and stars in the mockumentary film, Prison Logic, based on his web series of the same name, which is due out in theaters later this year. The film centers on his alter-ego, “Tijuana Jackson,” an ex-convict with dreams of becoming a self-made motivational speaker and life coach. Romany raised over $200,000 through a crowdfunding campaign to fund the film.

Last year, Romany starred in the Netflix film Holiday Rush, where he portrays a single dad who loses his job right as his four kids share their Christmas lists.

On television, Malco currently stars as “Rome” in the ABC drama series A Million Little Things alongside Ron Livingston, James Roday and David Giuntoli. The series follows a group of friends from Boston who met under unexpected circumstances and are intertwined in each other’s lives; some have achieved success, while others are struggling in their careers and relationships. When one of them dies unexpectedly, it forces the others to reevaluate themselves and finally start living. The show airs Thursdays 9/8c on ABC and was renewed for a second season. Malco was nominated for an NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Actor in a Drama Series for this role.

Malco's breakout role was as the trash-talking womanizer “Jay” in Judd Apatow’s 2005 box office hit, The 40-Year-Old Virgin.  Since then, he has appeared in several memorable roles alongside some of the biggest names in film, including Last Vegas alongside Robert De Niro, Morgan Freeman, and Michael Douglas; box office hits Think Like A Man and Think Like A Man Too; The Love Guru alongside Mike Meyers; Blades of Glory with Will Ferrell and Will Arnett; and Baby Mama alongside Tina Fey and Amy Poehler.

Additional film credits include Malcom D. Lee’s Night School opposite Tiffany Haddish and Kevin Hart; Top Five, written and directed by Chris Rock; indie comedy The Chateau alongside Paul Rudd; When the Bough Breaks opposite Morris Chestnut and Regina Hall; ensemble comedy Almost Christmas; A Little Bit of Heaven starring Kate Hudson; and Saint John of Las Vegas with Steve Buscemi. 

On television, Malco is known for his role on the critically acclaimed Showtime series Weeds, opposite Mary-Louise Parker and Kevin Nealon. He also had a recurring role on Starz sitcom Blunt Talk opposite Sir Patrick Stewart. Additional television credits include CBS drama The Good Wife, Amazon dark comedy Mad Dogs; and ABC comedy No Ordinary Family.

Malco is of Trinidadian descent and was born in Brooklyn, New York. When he isn’t in production, he resides in Puerto Rico.

Regina Hall

Regina Hall began her acting career in the late 1990s while simultaneously earning a master's degree from New York University. With numerous film and television credits to her name, Hall has emerged as one of Hollywood’s most sought-after actresses. Hall was most recently nominated for an NAACP Award for her role as Dawn Towner in the hit SHOWTIME comedy series Black Monday, opposite Don Cheadle, with season 2 premiering March 2020. Hall recently wrapped production for the upcoming thriller “Breaking News in Yuba County,” also starring Allison Janney and Mila Kunis and it was recently announced Hall is set to star and executive produce the upcoming occult drama “MASTER,” with Amazon Studios.

In 2019, Hall not only starred in the hit comedy “Little” alongside Issa Rae and Marsai Martin, she also executive produced the film partnering with Girls Trip producer Will Packer and Black-ish creator Kenya Barris. Hall can also be seen in the critically acclaimed film “The Hate U Give,” which premiered at the prestigious Toronto Film Festival in 2018. In addition, Hall also starred in “Support the Girls,” released in August 2018, and was nominated for an Independent Spirit Award for her work in the film. In 2017, Hall starred in the fan favorite “Girls Trip” alongside Jada Pinkett Smith, Queen Latifah and Tiffany Haddish. The film was a global hit bringing in more than $140 million worldwide and was one of the year’s biggest and most talked-about films.

Other past films include: “SHAFT” opposite Samuel L. Jackson, “When the Bough Breaks,” “Barbershop 3,” “The Best Man Holiday,” “Think Like A Man Too,” “About Last Night,” “Law Abiding Citizen” “Paid in Full” and “Scary Movie,” as well as its three sequels. Hall also had supporting roles in “Love & Basketball” and “Disappearing Acts.” On television, she appeared in guest roles on Grandfathered, Insecure and Black-ish. Other credits include With This Ring, Married, Law & Order: LA and Ally McBeal.

 

Tami Roman

Hailing from White Plains, NY, Actress, Producer, Television Personality, Comedian, Spokesperson and Seasoned Businesswoman, Tami roman first rose to fame when she was cast on MTV's ground-breaking series, 'The Real World'.

Tami is the creator of “The Bonnet Chronicles”, an Instagram account that features hilarious tell-it-like-it-is rants by Tami’s alter ego, Petty Betty. Fans of “The Bonnet Chronicles” include Halle Berry, Taraji P. Henson, Snoop Dogg, Missy Elliott, Winnie Harlow, Ellen Pompeo, Tiffany Haddish and Pink. In 2018, “The Bonnet Chronicles” turned into a bi-weekly scripted series, available exclusively on Tidal.

Tami has gained notoriety as an actress and starred alongside distinguished actors such as Halle Berry, Octavia Spencer, Steve Harvey, Kevin Hart, Courtney Cox, Taraji P. Henson, Vivica A. Fox and Ed O’ Neill.

Currently, Tami is set to appear on The Oprah Winfrey Network’s, Girlfriend Check In; Reese Witherspoon’s Truth Be Told, opposite Octavia Spencer for Apple TV; Carl Weber’s The Family Business for BET; and just announced, a Lee Daniels production for HULU https://deadline.com/2019/09/ms-pat-comedy-pilot-cast-tami-roman-series-regular-1202729511/ at the top of 2020. Roman’s involvement in BounceTV’s hit series Saints and Sinners had the most views in the history of the network. Tami recently appeared on the Emmy Award winning show, RuPaul’s Drag Race, where she raised money for St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital.

Tami has launched and conceptualized high-grossing brands including TR Hair, Roman Rose Fragrance and TR Love Cosmetics, sold in Walgreens. Tami’s business savvy and ever-increasing popularity have resulted in countless endorsements, including a position as the national spokesperson for NV Clinical and speaking on behalf of Wal-Mart and AT&T Dream In Black at The Essence Festival.

Roman has a strong social media presence with over 7 million followers between Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and her personal web site (OfficialTamiRoman.com). She and her two daughters reside in Los Angeles along with her husband, retired NFL Player, Reggie Youngblood.