Gavin Clarke

Secret Spitfires with Documentary Film Makers Howman and Cetintas

I teamed up with documentary filmmakers Howman and Cetintas to write and help deliver their Secret Spitfires production as a book, published by History Press. Their people-driven take on the Spitfire legend has been covered by media including The Mail on Sunday and recognised by the Royal Air Force Museum among others.

Released first on DVD and then to cinemas in 2018, Secret Spitfires unveils an untold story of a unique war-time operation: the civilian army of thousands of young women who built Spitfires in secret at converted garages, bus depots and other civilian facilities following the enemy’s destruction of Supermarine’s plants in Southampton.

We jointly formulated the creative treatment to tailor the DVD and cinematic experience to the demands of print and requirements of readers. We devised a narrative framework that introduced new areas of interest and explored existing topics in greater depth while remaining true to the original story that fans loved. The publishing project was founded on talking to subject experts including former Spitfires engineers, drawing on original audio/visual from the documentary, combing through additional primary sources that were fact-checked and confirmed, and selecting suitable images. We successfully delivered our project through a meticulous and structured creative and production process.


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    Photo Credits: NOAA, Alex Iby, Daniel Eledut, Austrian National Library, Secret Spitfires & Joyce Kolk.