Biker Flicks—The upcoming Duke City Shootout--a seven-day film festival designed to create seven on-the-fly short films right here in Albuquerque--is revving up with an early event. Christopher Coppola's Biker Bonanza will consist of a motorcycle caravan from Albuquerque to Roswell and back again. The caravan will be led by filmmaker/motorhead/Shootout guru Christopher Coppola. Organizers promise “beef pit BBQ & brew, surprise B-movie screenings & much more.” The ride will begin at 7:30 a.m. on Tuesday, July 19, and will continue through July 20. Admission is $30 for one day or $50 for both days. Log on to www.dukecityshootout.com for more information and to download a registration form.
Rocket Men—So far, New Mexico hasn't served as the backdrop for many particularly successful films (2003's Blind Horizon recently went direct-to-video), but we can continue to hope. Last week, Governor Richardson's office announced that Warner Brothers would be returning to shoot the studio's third film in New Mexico. Astronaut Farmer will begin shooting this September in central and northern New Mexico and should employ approximately 100 New Mexicans. The film will be the work of offbeat writing/directing duo, Mark and Michael Polish, who were responsible for the unusual indies Twin Falls, Idaho and Northfork. The film is said to center on an eccentric farmer who dreams of space travel and sets out to build a rocket ship in his barn, igniting the scorn of his neighbors, the curiosity of the press and the concern of the government. No cast has been set.
DomeFest 2005—The Lodestar Astronomy Center at the New Mexico Museum of Natural History & Science will be hosting the annual DomeFest, July 16-17. This cutting-edge film festival will feature the newest in experimental digital animation projected onto the Astronomy Center's 5,000 square-foot screen. This third annual festival features 15 short films created in Italy, Germany, Australia and around the U.S.--including four pieces from right here in New Mexico. Immediately preceding the DomeFest on Friday, July 15, will be the world premiere of “Gronk's BrainFlame,” a 14-minute immersive art piece created by Los Angeles-based artist Gronk. This screening is free, but does require a reservation by logging on to http://artslab.unm.edu/rsvp.html. Admission to the assorted screenings on Saturday and Sunday are on a pay-as-you-can basis ($8 is suggested for the juried show and $5 for the non-juried shows). Screenings, lectures and symposiums start at 10 a.m. on Saturday and 9 a.m. on Sunday. If you can't make it this weekend, the festival will continue each Friday night until Sept. 9 with screenings of the 2005 Juried Show and “Gronk's BrainFlame” as a double-feature. For more details, log on to www.domefest.org.