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Funeral sitcom Morbid pilot now online

Twelve years ago, Michael Dee wrote a sitcom set in the world of funeral directing, entitled Morbid. The independent actor, writer and filmmaker filed it away as a project for another day.

Now, helped by support from local businesses and a crowdfunding campaign, the pilot episode is available to watch online at morbidsit.com and hopes are that 2019 could be the year funding is found for a full series.

The episode, set in Ellesmere Port, Cheshire, focuses on brother and sister Mike and Ashley who sadly lose their parents in a hearse-related accident, and find themselves with a family business neither of them ever wanted.

Reluctantly they realise it’s down to them to keep the business going and stop it from becoming a laughing stock. It’s a rocky start as they look to recruit two new staff and find a replacement hearse at very short notice. Their first funeral is just around the corner and they really don’t know what they’re doing …

After the script was rescued from the attic on Christmas Day 2016, the project picked up momentum in 2017 when Ellesmere Port businesses started to get behind it. A florist, funeral directors, solicitors and even a pub offered services and products to keep the show costs down, and an online crowdfunding campaign raised more than £5,000 with almost 200 people donating.

Earlier in 2018, Michael made national headlines when he teamed up with local funeral director Ian Dallinger to help direct a real funeral for a family who couldn’t afford one, using Michael’s own hearse.

Ian, who runs his funeral service on the Wirral, appears in the pilot episode as a candidate being interviewed for a job. He has endorsed the show from the start and his advice has helped writers Michael Dee and Elric Cadwallader amend the script to keep it as real as possible and hopefully gain the hard earned respect of the industry.

Response to Morbid so far has been hugely encouraging, with the premiere hosted at Storyhouse, Chester, selling out quickly and receiving five star reviews. Feedback on Facebook has also been very positive with one funeral director commenting: “It is a credit to the industry and the subject matter has been tackled well.”

Find out more, see how you can get involved and watch the episode at morbidsit.com

Photo: Paul Warburton Photography

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