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'Inmate #1: The Rise of Danny Trejo': The Beatles and 'The Wizard of Oz' kept the actor sane in prison

Trejo speaks about his time in prison in great detail in the film. One story that he tells viewers is about the time he was placed in solitary confinement and started re-enacting 'The Wizard of Oz'
Danny Trejo (Universal Pictures)
Danny Trejo (Universal Pictures)

Spoilers for 'Inmate #1: The Rise of Danny Trejo'

Legendary actor Danny Trejo, also known by his popular nickname Machete, has lived a very interesting life. He's been a criminal and a celebrity and everything in between and that story comes out in the new documentary 'Inmate #1: The Rise of Danny Trejo'. In the documentary film, Trejo speaks about his time in prison in great detail. One story that he tells us is about the time he was placed in solitary confinement and started re-enacting the 1939 movie 'The Wizard of Oz'.

"You just keep from going crazy by making yourself crazy," Trejo explains. "I was in the hole and I was running around the cell and I would act out 'The Wizard of Oz'. 'Give me those shoes Dorothy', the whole crazy movie, just to keep my brain going."

Trejo's daughter, Danielle Trejo, also chimes in adding, "You have to cope in whatever way you can. For him, it was 'The Wizard of Oz'."

But 'The Wizard of Oz' isn't the only thing that brought some sense of peace to Trejo during his time in prison. In the documentary, he also recalls how one of the guards used to have a radio and how he heard the Beatles song 'Hey Jude' for the first time from behind bars.

"The hole used to be like quiet during the day but at night it would go crazy, you know, I mean you just go berserk," Trejo narrates. "The Beatles song came out. The first time we heard that 'Judy-Judy', it got like really quiet. And everybody was trying to hear. It came on the speakers and everybody was trying to hear that 'Judy Judy Judy Juday'. It just blew up."

"There's different songs that stick with you," Trejo says. "Songs that remind you of your wife, your kids. Songs that take you all the way back to high school."

And without that song to raise his spirits, who knows what could have happened to the legend of Trejo?

Catch the full inspirational story of Danny Trejo's long and interesting life in 'Inmate #1: The Rise of Danny Trejo', out now on Digital HD.