Short Film Of The Week: The Splott Division
Directed by BAFTA winner David J Evans, episode one introduces us to Splott’s ultimate defence team – Aiden “The Hearing Aid” and Mia “Superosmia”, as they prepare to welcome a new member to their ranks: the once-great “Iceberg”. But when Iceberg runs into Superhero-Superfan Jack, things take a turn towards the sinister…
First of all, we’d like to thank you for bringing to our attention the hallowed streets of Splott itself. How did the Splott Division come into being?
Tim (who co-wrote the film as well as playing Aiden “The Hearing Aid”) and I met as actors at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama where we did a film project with David. We felt we worked well together, so we asked him to direct a sitcom project we had in mind. We started to workshop a few ideas, and also brought actress Hanna Jarman (Superosmia in the series) in to help develop the story through improvisation. It was after the UK Film Council was cut that the idea for The Splott Division came. If Superheroes jobs aren’t safe then whose are? We created our own non-departmental public body The Superhero League Council, with the idea that each local council (funds-permitting) should have its own Superhero Division.
What can we expect from our three heroes as the series continues?
We will see what life is really like as a Superhero. It isn’t always easy, some of them enjoy being a Hero, while others just wish they could be normal. Although they are Superheroes, they still suffer from the same pressures as us, like needing to earn money and wanting to fit in. As the series progresses we’ll see the Heroes deal with a terrorist threat to the Millennium Stadium, and how they react to the news that The Superhero League Council is being cut. At the end of episode one, superhero super-fan Jack is given the opportunity to switch identities with his Hero the mind-reading Superhero The Iceberg, which of course leads to all sorts of trouble. Think Derek Acorah wearing lycra and a black eye-mask.
Generally in our daydreams Derek wears very little else. So how important has social media been in the creation and promotion of team Splott?
Social media has been vital. Being an independent company we didn’t have any funding for the series, so there is no advertising. The success of The Splott Division rests on word of mouth and subsequently any press we can generate off the back of that. Since the first episode went live on Monday it has been shared 420 times on Facebook, which is great. Twitter has been amazing at getting The Splott Division to people that wouldn’t come across it normally, as well as creating a community feel about the whole thing – people whose feedback can directly affect how future episodes are developed. We may even turn to this community to ask them to create a Superhero for future episodes.
Favourite moment whilst creating the series?..
Creating the three Superheroes and their powers. Oh and becoming a big kid again and finding all my old Superhero toys.
… and the least glamorous moment?
Standing on the main road ready to do the chase scene while cars drive past beeping horns or shouting ‘Action!’ out of the window!
Ahhh, the rock and roll lifestyle. Got any future projects gestating?
On the back of The Splott Division we have been given funding by IdeasTap to develop a pilot for another webseries. It’s called Mind Games, it’s about a pub quiz team with a bit of a twist…