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Where CHICKENS are outlawed, only OUTLAWS have chickens.

Crackdown! is a short documentary that takes a satirical look at what it means to raise chickens in your backyard – and become a criminal for doing so. Written and directed by Jan Keck.


Are you a resident of the City of Toronto who wants to support urban chicken keeping?

Please consider signing the petition organized by the Toronto Chickens community group asking city council to update Toronto bylaws to allow for the responsible keeping of backyard chickens.



In the wake of the 100-mile diet and the public’s increasing desire for local and organic food, Crackdown! tells the story of Toronto’s urban chicken keepers, a smart, savvy and rapidly-growing band of mavericks who just want access to fresh eggs at home for their families … “Pets with benefits,” if you will.

The film takes a satirical look at the municipal bylaws that forced this movement underground and what it means to raise chickens in your backyard, – and become a criminal for doing so.

“Local, urban food is a huge issue, with huge potential for fresh low cost healthy food to be grown in cities. But what does Toronto have against chickens? Crackdown! takes a satirical look at this issue – they have a great team with a terrific track record. I fully support this project.” ~ David Miller, former mayor of Toronto

“We have supported and advocated for urban chickens as a part of our local food system. As Torontonians work to re-own their food system, keeping chickens in backyards is a way to bring food production to a more ethical and sustainable foundation.” ~ Darcy Higgins, Food Forward


  • Director, Writer: Jan Keck
  • Producers: Jan Keck, Paris Zheng
  • Cinematographers: Jan Keck, Seon Kwon Hwang
  • Additional Camera: Josh Harrower, Christopher McEnroe
  • Steadicam Operator: Fergus Lowrey
  • Editor: Joan Navarra
  • Assistant Editor: Seon Kwon Hwang
  • Music: Kristopher Fulton
  • Sound Recording: Jane, Paris Zheng
  • Sound Design & Mix: Justin Long-Him Shum
  • Foley Artist: Alex Adams
  • Colour Grading & Title Design: Jan Keck
  • Logo Design: Lavanya Balasubramanian
  • Transcriber: Kathleen Mackey
  • Fundraising Writer: Julia Morgan
  • Production Assistant: Yuya Saito
  • Cast: Bryan Paccagnella, Troy Matthew Martin, Cara Stephenson (Plum Thunder)


  • NOW Magazine – The Yolk is on us! (August 30, 2012) “The Yolk is on us!”