Screenwriters Unite!—The New Mexico Screenwriter's Speaker Series is about to present its very first quarterly event. This Saturday, July 23, the Speaker Series welcomes noted script consultant Jim Mercurio. Mercurio is a regular columnist in Creative Screenwriting magazine and runs some of the most popular classes at the annual Screenwriting Expo in Los Angeles. In this intensive, all-day class, Mercurio will discuss screenwriting topics such as story, structure, scenes, dilemma and subplots. He will also incorporate elements from one of his most popular classes at the Screenwriting Expo, “Killer Endings.” Mercurio will also talk a bit about the practical and business side of screenwriting. There will be plenty of time for questions and answers. According to the NMSSS, this class is perfect for the beginning screenwriter looking for a solid foundation from which to approach a story idea, the screenwriter looking to vet those ideas for dramatic possibilities and the screenwriter looking to put a solid polish on a completed work. The $125 fee for this workshop includes lunch and all handouts. Student and teacher discounts are available, but seating is very limited. Those wanting to attend are encouraged to sign up online (nmscreenwriters.com) as soon as possible. For more information on Mercurio, you can log on to jamespmercurio.com. Mercurio's class will take place at the South Broadway Cultural Center (1025 Broadway SE) from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Show Your Shorts—Billed as Albuquerque's friendliest film festival, the Third Annual Local Shorts Film Festival will take place August 27 and 28 at the historic Lobo Theater in Nob Hill. The festival is looking for short films in all genres, up to 15 minutes in length. The event, cosponsored by the City of Albuquerque Film Office, is a benefit for the APS Homeless Project and the Monte Vista Elementary School food and clothing bank. Last year's benefit gathered food, clothing, school supplies and cash donations for the estimated 3,000 homeless children in APS. If you're a local filmmaker, you still have a chance to see your film on the big screen and make a difference in your community. Monday, August 1, is the deadline for submitting your short film or video. Check out the Local Shorts Website (localshorts.com) for submission information and to prepurchase tickets for the August 27 and 28 festival.