Features interviews with PAT BOONE, Brother
RAY ROGERS and Prison Chaplain HARRY HOWARD.

Click Pat Boone photograph for preview clip of DVD.

"Some guys feel that religion is something for the weak, a sign of weakness and that it's just a ruse or a psychological game or an emotional crutch. But that's just one of the devil's lies...'Yes' when Jesus says to me 'when I was sick in prison did you visit me?' I fully expect to meet people someday in heaven who will come up to me and say 'Hey, I met you in San Quentin." ...Pat Boone.

This intimate half-hour documentary special was shot entirely inside San Quentin Prison. Advertised around the prison as a "Jesus Celebration", the event on the lower exercise yard featured Pat Boone, National Champion Wrestlers, gospel and jazz musicians and testimonials by convicts and former convicts who had been "saved."

San Quentin Prison is one of the oldest and without a doubt, the most violent institution in America. But there is more going on at this old joint than the familiar stabbing and the constant tension and hate.

You'll see them all in "Doin' Time With Jesus", but there was more to be communicated than all that. Neighbors you never knew you had; men who are somehow getting their lives together with help from no one; humans with problems you and I can only wonder about; and faces which words cannot describe.

The Jesus Celebration was not directed at the regular chapel goers, some 250 Protestants, Catholics, Jews, Muslims, Christian Scientists and others out of a population of about 2500 men. It was for all the alienated; for prisoners who might have some closet religion that needed a boost to get it out in the open; for those tired of prison life who are seeking new meanings and new direction. Some quite frankly came to see some woman, hear some music, watch the wrestling and see Pat Boone.


"Hallelujah! This is a great trip for Jesus!" shouted convict "Brother" Ray Rogers into his hand-held microphone. He was standing on a large makeshift stage at one end of the grass covered lower yard at San Quentin.

Under any other circumstances, Brother Ray might have been the main event. Tall, handsome, energetic, he exhibited the enthusiasm of a Billy Graham, the eloquence of an Elmer gantry, the delivery of a Marjoe. But today he was competing with a big movie star, Pat Boone.

Until he came to San Quentin 19 months before, Brother Ray had been just Ray Roger, 30, convicted seven times. His life of crime and violence had begun when he was a teenager and he had served time in youth reformatories and other prisons. By the time he reached Big Q. he had earned the label "HVP" - high violence potential - and was placed in a maximum security block.

"All that time I was ready to commit suicide because I was tired. A seven-time loser gets tired of hearing all those toilets flushing all day; tired of all this madness and violence; tired of running the streets and chasing heroin and hurting people. I was tired of my life. And right then, oh boy! peace came over me and I just lay there sobbing on my bunk and I knew that Jesus was right there in my cell comforting me."

Brother Ray reached into his hip pocket and pulled out a small New Testament, thumbed and battered. "This is food and drink to me, spiritual food." ...


Directed by - Marino Colmano
Produced by - David Lent and Marino Colmano
Associate Producer - John Hulls
Camerawork by - Marino Colmano, David Lent
and Ducan Sutherland
Scoring and Editing by - Marino Colmano and
David Lent, Marino Colmano and Ron Cameron
Music by El Esposento Alto and Crusaders for Christ
Narration by - John Antonelli
Interviews by Marianna DaFina, Sharon Threlked
Alice Yarish, Karen Schwartz and John Hulls


During 1976, partners David Lent and Marino Colmano where on the verge of forming a company called IMAGENATION. They had been involved with another documentary about San Quentin Prison and had been able to get maximum security prison clearance for filming. While they were still editing a two-hour special for PBS called "Inside San Quentin") they received a call from the San Quentin prison chaplain inviting them to participate in an upcoming religious celebration.

After soliciting private funding and receiving a small stipend they started the project with the help of several members of the Marin Community College Broadcast Department. The production utilized three revolutionary advances in television technology for that era: hand-held color cameras with portable videocassette recording decks, high fidelity sound through a Nagra recorder and then into the videotape decks, and the digital Time-Base-Corrector (a signal-stabilizing device which allowed the small, highly portable equipment to generate a broadcast-quality TV image).

The crew of twelve included two camera persons, two operating the decks and microphones, one operating the Nagra sound, five interviewers, a still photographer, the director and producer. Most of the crew served more than one role.


    San Francisco's ABC affiliate KGO
Videos are available for broadcast licensing, universities,
schools,libraries and as home videos.

Running time 27 Minutes - Color
Preview DVDs available for Broadcasters and quantity buyers.

DVD - $25.


Please click here to email with

Photo Galleries by Director Marino Colmano, click to see more of his work.