A scene from the “Welcome to Surrey” web series created by Kashif Pasta and Shyam Valera.

‘Welcome to Surrey’ comedy series to hit TV, computer screens

Surrey filmmakers craft five-part series about a lawyer who comes home from Toronto

SURREY — A new web series very much focused on Surrey will hit TV and computer screens this month.

The five-part Welcome to Surrey comedy series, created by Surrey residents Kashif Pasta and Shyam Valera, will be available online and on Telus Optik.

Each episode is between 10 and 15 minutes long, Pasta said. “It’s about an hour total, the season,” he explained.

The series, screened for an audience at Surrey City Hall on Thursday evening (Aug. 3), focuses on Suneet, a law student living in Toronto who comes home to Surrey to look after her ailing father.

Last summer, Pasta and Shyam entered the series in Telus’ Storyhive contest, but didn’t win the $50,000 prize. Instead, Telus Optik responded to a subsequent pitch and agreed to air a revised version of Welcome to Surrey.

“In the process of pitching it around to more funders and people, Telus really did like the original pitch, but said (they) felt that the pilot fell short of what was possible. So they said if we were willing to re-shoot, they were willing to do the season. So we got the same terms if we’d actually won the (Storyhive) contest, and we got a chance to do it right.”

Pasta and Valera founded Dunya, which “uses film, live events and the internet to help progressive organizations and companies reflect the diversity of the people they’re talking to.” The company is on the web at dunya.ca.

tom.zillich@surreynowleader.com