Superheroes
Original Published Date: 
Thursday, April 22, 2021

Full article issued by Swinburne University of Technology.

An outcome of an ARC Linkage Project, a Swinburne-produced documentary exploring our obsession with superheroes, has been awarded Best Documentary Short at the 2020 international FantaSci Awards.

Produced by Swinburne’s Associate Professor Liam Burke and co-produced by Mark Hellinger, the short documentary is an examination of the many ways that superheroes inspire us, with contributions from superhero stars, comic creators, and fans. 

'From blockbuster films to convention cosplay, superheroes have never been more popular or pervasive,' says Associate Professor Burke.

'This project was developed over several years, and draws on over one hundred interviews with TV stars, comic book creators, and costume-clad fans. While often dismissed as escapist fantasy, this film demonstrates how these high-flying heroes can bring people together and provide hope in difficult times.'

'It provides an affectionate portrait of the many ways that superheroes inspire us – from a marriage proposal at a comic book convention, to heralding the arrival of an Indigenous Australian Superhero.'

The documentary is just one of the outcomes of the ARC Linkage Project Superheroes and Me, in which Swinburne investigators Professor Angela Ndalianis and Associate Professor Burke collaborated with the Australian Centre for the Moving Image (ACMI), Australia’s national museum of film, TV, videogames, digital culture and art.

Other outcomes of the project include Cleverman: The Exhibition and Virtual Reality (VR) experience Superheroes Realities Collide that were exhibited at ACMI for four months from late 2018.

Photo credit: 

Screenshot from Superheroes & Me, Produced by Liam Burke and co-produced by Mark Hellinger.