When you talk with writer Morgan Rosenblum, the first thing you notice is that he’s a very passionate guy when it comes to telling stories. While I knew the premise of what Treadwater was, he still managed to have me on the edge of my seat with all kinds of fun details about the project…and what a project it is. Equal parts screenplay, graphic novel, mobile platform, video game and TV series, it’s an entire world built for fans to interact with and become a part of the story.
What is that story? Well…I’ll let Morgan tell you that:
The concept is a team of vigilantes living 15 years in the future, in a world where the Euro has crashed and the populace is raging. There’s turmoil, chaos, anarchy, dictatorships are rising up, and governments all over the world are taking different approaches as this thing spreads. This is a group of people led by one man, and their mission is to enforce peace throughout the world. Each member of the team has their own backstory that can be described in a single word – for instance, hope, life, redemption…. Some will see them as heroes, others as terrorists, but ultimately they are vigilantes. It’s a very big story with a lot of interesting elements.
How does the name Treadwater play into the story?
The Washington Post prints an article about the group and calls them Treadwater – it’s about the idea that rather than just treading water and waiting for something to happen, they’re actively trying to make the world a better place. The group actually calls themselves the Candlelight Program, owing that to the belief that a single light can lead us out from the darkness and into the light.
What inspired the story?
As a kid I always enjoyed superheroes, drawing and playing make-believe. I wanted to come up with something on my own, so my brother and I always played around with the idea of a team of vigilantes. Years later I was stuck in a job doing medical tech sales and feeling uninspired. I wanted to create a plausible world similar to what The Walking Dead had done; it had to be relatable. I started off writing the screenplay and it grew from there. I was able to quit my day job and focus on this full-time.
Would you compare to anything that’s out there now?
It has elements of The Dark Knight, Orange is the New Black, Lost, The Walking Dead…it’s hard to create something original anymore but we’ve built characters that you love, you hate, there are great flashbacks, we explore personal stories…it’s all there.
Speaking of The Walking Dead, Chad Coleman (who played Tyrese) is involved in Treadwater. How did that happen?
My brother was on a blind date at Soho House and was talking about his love for The Walking Dead. He realized Chad was at the table next to him and they started talking about Treadwater, and Chad took his phone and input his contact information. Next thing we know we’re pitching the project to him and Chad was texting us just a few hours later with all of his ideas. He’s a great businessman and understands how to market something and get fans to notice it. He’s not just an executive producer on it, he also plays one of the lead characters.
What are the next steps for the project?
We’re developing all of the mediums at once – the second graphic novel in the series, the video game, the website, and we’re about to go out and pitch the TV series. We’ll also be going to conventions in 2016. The game needs to be top of the line to meet industry standards so we’re working a lot on that. The website is also very interactive and will soon have a mock entrance exam for fans to take in order to become an “ace operative.” We also have an app in development.
So there you have it. Futuristic vigilantes and an endless number of ways to follow their journey. What more could one ask for?
Visit the Treadwater website – it’s incredible and you’ll get lost in this awesome world: Treadwater.tv
And check out the trailer below:
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