Living on One Dollar

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Living on One Dollar
Produced byChris Temple
Zach Ingrasci
Sean Leonard
Ryan Christoffersen
Distributed byGravitas Ventures
Release date
  • January 1, 2015 (2015-01-01) (Netflix)

Living on One Dollar is a documentary film directed, produced and edited by Chris Temple, Zach Ingrasci, Sean Leonard, and Ryan Christofferson.


The film follows the experience of four young friends as they live on less than $1 a day for two months in rural Guatemala. They battle hunger, parasites and the realization that there are no easy answers. Yet, the generosity and strength of Rosa, a 20-year-old woman with her husband Anthony, and Chino, a 12-year-old boy, gives them hope that there are effective ways to make a difference.[1]


The project did not start out as a film, but rather short YouTube videos that went viral, amassing over 650,000 views on the site.[2] Inspired by the response, the four college friends produced a 56-minute film from the experience. They have since taken the film on a national tour to 25 major universities, receiving coverage on CBS This Morning with Charlie Rose.[3] The film won best documentary for the audience award at the Sonoma International Film Festival and Nobel Laureate Muhammad Yunus calls it, "A must watch film, that provides a unique look into the hardship and hope of life in extreme poverty." Similarly, Gary Ross, the Writer and Director of the first Hunger Games film, calls the film "moving, inspiring and important.".[4] Due to their film and impact work, directors Chris and Zach have been recognized alongside Angelina Jolie and Bill Gates as two of the top 100 Visionary Leaders of 2015 by Real Leaders Magazine.[5]


As of September 1, 2015, the film is available directly from the "Living on One" organization[6] and on Netflix[7] globally.


The filmmakers have continued their dedication to the Guatemalan community they lived in, raising over $800,000 for education and microfinance programs as of Oct, 2017. All of their programs are run through two impact partners, Mayan Families & Whole Planet Foundation, who are registered 501C3 non profit organizations. You read more about their impact work on their website

They have also continued to visit and film with the community, resulting in a new film in 2015, called ''Rosa - These Storms. The film follows their friend and star of Living on One Dollar, Rosa Coj Bocel, over a five-year period to provide a personal look into the life and hope of a young Mayan woman. Among others, it premiered at Seattle International Film Festival, LA Shorts, Washington West, Cleveland, and Sonoma International. It was also featuring by The Atlantic Magazine, Short of the Week, and Vimeo Staff Picks. Rosa was able to fly from Guatemala to Washington D.C. to accept an award on the film's behalf and to speak with NPR and others. Rosa was recently featured by NPR on a list of "Women Changing the World."

New Films[edit]

Most recently, Living on One Productions teamed up with 1001 MEDIA to embark on another feature documentary, Salam Neighbor, to provide an intimate look into the Syrian refugee crisis. In the immersive style they've become known for, Chris and Zach live in a tent inside of a Syrian refugee camp for one month. They have received coverage in The Wall Street Journal, Fast Company, and IndieWire, as it's the first time in history that the United Nations has allowed filmmakers to do this. Salam Neighbor is also available globally on Netflix.

“This film is important … because it shatters the idea that there isn’t anything that one can do, that the problem is too big.” - Samantha Power, U.S. Ambassador to the U.N.

“[Chris and Zach] don't just make documentaries. They make themselves part of the story.” - NPR[8]


  1. ^ Mandi Woodruff Dec. 6, 2012, 3:07 PM 786,860 9 (2012-12-06). "What It's Like To Live On $1 A Day". Business Insider. Retrieved 2013-07-03.CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  2. ^ "Living On One: College Students Live On $1 A Day In Documentary". 2012-10-28. Retrieved 2013-07-03.
  3. ^ "Could you live on one dollar a day?". CBS News. Retrieved 2013-07-03.
  4. ^ "Stars Align for 16th Annual Sonoma International Film Festival - Blog". 2013-04-18. Retrieved 2013-07-03.
  5. ^ Real Leaders Magazine Missing or empty |title= (help)
  6. ^
  7. ^
  8. ^ Seifman, Sam. "Meet Your New Neighbors, The American Filmmakers". NPR.

External links[edit]