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iW’s Project of the Day: “Crisis Call” from Producers of “Taxicab Confessions”

iW's Project of the Day: "Crisis Call" from Producers of "Taxicab Confessions"

Here’s your daily dose of an indie film in progress; at the end of the week, you’ll have the chance to vote for your favorite.

In the meantime: Is this a movie you’d want to see? Tell us in the comments.

“Crisis Call 211”

Tweetable Logline:

New doc CRISIS CALL 211 by Taxicab Confessions producers shows impact to families as huge budget cuts threaten America’s social safety net

Elevator Pitch:

Emmy-winning filmmakers Joe and Harry Gantz, creators of HBO’s “Taxicab Confessions” and CBS’s “The Defenders,” are shooting a documentary, “Crisis Call 211.” This film presents powerful, authentic portraits of families in economic turmoil as a result of the country’s worst economic crisis since the Great Depression, followed by the billions of dollars in budget cuts to America’s social safety net. As the 2012 elections approach, and pressure is mounting to slash even more funding from social services, “Crisis Call 211” puts a human face on the impact of budget cuts to a growing number of families who desperately need help.

Production Team:

Producers/Directors: Joe and Harry Gantz (“Taxicab Confessions,” “The Defenders,” “Couples Arguing”)
Editor: Aaron Butler (“Taxicab Confessions,” “Pleasure for Sale,” “The Rise and Fall of Jim Crow”)

About the Production:

“Looking at the growing disparity between rich and poor, the disappearing middle class, and the cutting of social services, moved us to film the difficult struggle and amazing courage of families trying to stop their American dream from slipping away. ‘Crisis Call 211’ shows folks who once could pay their bills and raise a family, but now are being pulled under by this recession. We’ll release this documentary before the elections, so that legislators deciding who will be taxed more or less, and whose services will be cut or preserved, can understand the overwhelming challenges facing so many families today.” — Harry Gantz

Current Status:

Pre-production, plans to begin shooting in November.

For more information and to support the film:

Film Website
Kickstarter Page

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Samantha Strauss

This is definitely a documentary that I want to see. I’m not that familiar with the 211 crisis line, and just from the trailer I’ve learned so much and am glad that it exists. The Gantz Brothers always teach the audience about what goes on outside of its own individual “bubble”. Sadly, this is an issue that is a growing problem for many in our country, and I hope this film reaches far and wide to educate the whole nation.

Alan Tarses

What the Gantz Brothers do is so important; they look at life as it is – in many cases, we’d prefer to look away and we can’t afford to do that at this point in time. This is a film that can actually help people, so let’s support this effort!

Jill Terrill

The situation that many families are currently in is heartbreaking. We all need to have our eyes opened to what is happening in our communities. Hopefully this film will have an impact on each and every one of us. Can’t wait to see it.


Most of us only have our fantasies of what life is REALLY like. This film will put reality into sharp focus. The 211 line is a crisis line, the tip of the iceberg. If we, ordinary American citizens, take time to look around in our own communities, we can make a difference in so many ways so that crises can be averted. This film can be a catalyst for change both in our own neighborhoods and in our government. Joe and Harry–here’s to you!.


Sounds interesting. I’m curious to learn about what is going on in parts of the country away from my community. Are they experiencing the same challenges as families are where I am? I would guess so – this country really needs to stop the bickering and come together to help each other. I hope this documentary will open up the eyes of those that “have” to help lend a hand to those who “have not.” What about all this talk about drawing down the military – where are the 300,000 soldiers going to find jobs in this economy? Way to go Gantz Bros.

Miguel Hadelich

A topic that truly needs our attention and I am glad someone like the Gantz brothers have decided to document it! Our government and society have been careless enough in letting families and individuals loose their basic needs in life. 211 is a service that unfortunately is very much needed. This documentary should create awareness and hopefully trigger the development of a plan to help reduce the incoming calls – fix the core issues.

Devon Terrill

I’m guessing no one from Wall Street will be featured in this film… This documentary will finally open some eyes to what is really happening to regular families in this messed up economy


I’m so glad to see that someone is making a film about what real people are going through in these difficult economic times. And I’m sure the Taxicab Confessions guys will not sugar coat it. I think this is going to be a powerful film and couldn’t come at a better time.

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