MJ: One of the film’s most powerful moments is Jennifer’s reunion with the trucker who introduced her to prostitution. Ultimately, I think she bit off more than she could chew.It’s hard to confront your past when you’re struggling to redefine yourself.

When arranging deals over the CB radio, the sex workers would ask the truck drivers, “what color is your house? ” MJ: The film briefly introduces a gay male prostitute offering “massages.” How common are male sex workers on the lot? This begs the question: Why did none of them feature prominently in the film? One of the concerns we had with our lead characters is that selecting them downplays the prevalence of pimps and trafficking in the industry.

AP: We heard a lot of stories, but the only one we met was Jesse. There’s the risk of violence motivated by homophobia. There’s an amazing organization called Truckers Against Trafficking that addresses the issue.

We had to bite the bullet on that because we just didn’t have the footage to deal with the issue of trafficking in a meaningful way that was consistent with the rest of the film.

MJ: Describe the police or security presence on the lot. Like I said, some truck stops were clean as a whistle. When police rolled through, truckers would announce their arrival and precise location.

I identified with her, as I identify with anyone who doesn’t really fit the mold. AP: The majority of filming was done over eight weeks.

Dan Livingston, the field producer, looked for ride shares on Craigslist and eventually found one with Juliana Star Asis, his friend who was headed to Tucson, Arizona. MJ: You focus on three women—Betty, Monica, and Jennifer. AP: We pitched the film as a feature documentary about truck stop sex workers.

Mother Jones: So this film was inspired by a truck stop prostitute you met while hitchhiking from New York to San Francisco? It was midday at a truck stop in Ohio, and I was sitting on a bench outside the travel center. We were in the middle of talking about her grandchildren when a truck driver who looked like Santa Claus walked by.

My camping bag lay on the table next to me and a cardboard sign with the word “WEST” scrawled on it. She offered to show him her breasts for , he took her up on it, and they walked off into the sunset.

We set out from New York, drove south on I-95, then west on I-10 until we hit L. We did a lot of research online and spoke with truck drivers to find out where the sex workers were most prevalent. We resolved ahead of time that we wouldn’t pay them because we thought that would make the film disingenuous. We had to go through a large volume of sex workers to find our cast.

We put together a map indicating hotspots around the country. They weren’t writers, filmmakers, musicians, or painters.

Betty and Monica are addicted to crack, Monica is homeless when she’s not crashing with friends or sympathetic drivers, and both are entangled in dysfunctional relationships.