HOTLINE is a documentary about the people who call and work for telephone hotlines and an exploration of the ways human conversation and connection can fight isolation and alienation in an increasingly digital world.
HOTLINE looks at the intensely intimate conversations that occur between anonymous strangers. From phone sex operators that buck industry standards by advertising their services with their real photos, to New York City's only suicide hotline that doesn't trace its calls, to the iconic spokeswoman of the Psychic Readers Network, Ms. Cleo, HOTLINE takes viewers behind the scenes and lets them eavesdrop on conversations that are intensely personal. At a time when we are told that the telephone is an obsolete technology, many hotlines are experiencing record high numbers of calls. HOTLINE seeks to open up a conversation about how we deal with loneliness and isolation… and how sometimes the help and support we need can only come from a stranger.
Directed and Produced by Tony Shaff
Produced by Lauren Ashley Belfer and Bryce Renninger
Edited by Charles Dugan
Filmed by Tony Shaff and Lauren Ashley Belfer
Audio by Bryce Renninger
Music by Jess Stroup
Associate Editor, Tara Brochon