By Jennifer BAGLEY, Mary HEWEY


Documentary - Completed 2019

Best friends Jack and Yaya celebrate their 30th year of friendship in their hometown in South Jersey USA alongside a motley crew of extended family and neighbors. While they party and reminisce, Jack and Yaya support each other as they both fight for acceptance as openly trans people.

& Awards

qFLIX Philadelphia 2019
Grande Jury Award
qFLIX Philadelphia 2019
Audience Award
Translations: Seattle Transgender Film Festival 2019
Audience Award
Inside Out LGBT Film Festival 2019
Hell's Half Mile Film Festival 2019
qFlix Worcester 2019
Audience Award
BFI Flare 2021
    • Year of production
    • 2019
    • Genres
    • Documentary, LGBT
    • Countries
    • USA
    • Languages
    • Duration
    • 83 mn
    • Director(s)
    • Jennifer BAGLEY, Mary HEWEY
    • Producer(s)
    • Jorgy CRUZ
    • Synopsis
    • Jack and Yaya met at ages three and two through their shared backyard fence. They spent their childhood together, building forts and burning trash cans in their small hometown in South Jersey USA. From a young age, Yaya and Jack saw each other as they truly were, a girl and a boy, even though the rest of the world didn’t see them that way. As they grew older, they both supported each other as they each came out as transgender.

      Decades later, Jack and Yaya remain best friends. Jack now lives in Boston with his loyal
      pup, Plinko, and works as a kindergarten teacher, while Yaya lives in her childhood home, waiting tables and trying to make ends meet after her mother’s passing. During his summer vacation, Jack travels back to his childhood home to spend time with Yaya and his extended family.

      Jack & Yaya follows these two friends for a year and explores their unique relationship, drawing on home videos and conversations with their eclectic cast of friends and family.

      Both Jack and Yaya face hurdles as they try to live their lives as their authentic selves. Jack, only a few years into his transition, struggles to decide whether to move forward with a gender-affirming surgery, while Yaya tackles the bureaucratic nightmare of legally changing her name in New Jersey, an eighteen step ordeal. Despite these struggles, Jack and Yaya go through it all with determination, a sense of humor, and immense love for each other.