Timothy J. “T. J.” Parsell (born July 12, ) is an American writer, filmmaker, and human rights activist committed to ending prison rape. He is best known for his book Fish: A Memoir of a Boy in a Man’s Prison. Directed by T.J. Parsell. With Jerry Broome, Bryan Dechart, Joe Hotham, Terrence Ruggiero. A 17 year old boy is sent to an adult prison for robbing a Fotomat. T.J. Parsell talked about his memoir [Fish: A Memoir of a Boy in a Man’s Prison], published by Carroll and Graf.

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I’m shooting a short film based on my book, Fish: A Memoir of a Boy in a Man’s Prison. Filming will take place in the very cellblock I was housed in over thirty years ago.

I’m taking 36 cast and crew members from NYC. Most of the crew are made up of fellow NYU graduate film students. This is a SAG film project and the cast are all working on deferred compensation. The largest expense is transporting, housing and feeding the cast and crew. Plus I have one day where I’ll need extras. Location fees, props, camera rental and costumes make up the majority of the budget.

For me, this is a very exciting project.


Fish: A Boy in a Man’s Prison () – IMDb

To be able to go back to the very prison I was incarcerated in over thirty years and prasell shoot a film there is very empowering. It’s a stand on the table, pound my chest, “I made fire” kind of moment. That prison did not destroy me.

The sexual abuse I suffered there as a teenager, did not destroy me. And now, for six days in early December, that prison is mine.

Fish: A Memoir of a Boy in a Man’s Prison

Much of the work I’ve been doing for the last decade has been raising awareness of the plight of teenagers housed in adult jails and prisons. This is a tremendous opportunity to tell that story to the world.

To humanize the issue in a way that only film can do. It’s easy to say that teens who mess up – who make mistakes – get what they deserve if they’re sent to prison. But it’s another thing, to see it dramatized and to identify with a human being that this is happening to. On any given day, in the United States, we house overteenagers in adult jails and prisons.

This film is about what happens to them.

This film is about the painful compromises one has to make to survive in there. This is a story about liberation in the most unlikely place. What happened, what it was like, and how I survived it. I hope you’ll help me tell this story. Questions about this project? Check out the FAQ. Private link to Server to view the film when finished.


All of the above, plus a signed 1st limited printing of Fish: Typos were corrected in subsequent printings. Signed Copy of the Script. Signed pages of fisy original Fish manuscript. Signed DVD of the finished film. Special Thank you in the closing credits. Speaking part in the film background character. Guard or Inmate Plus acting credit in the film. Nov 6, – Nov 30, 24 days.

Share this project Done. A Boy in a Man’s Prison.

Shooting a short film on location at Jackson Prison. A 17 year old boy sent to an adult prison for robbing a photomat with a toy gun. Support Select this reward. Kickstarter is not a store. It’s a way to bring creative parsll to life. Learn more about accountability. Signed copy of the script.

Funding period Nov 6, – Nov 30, 24 days.