This Friday was to mark the return of the Screenwriting Conference in Santa Fe. Unfortunately, “due to circumstances beyond our control” the organizers have announced that this year’s conference has been canceled. It would have been the 13th annual outing, which traditionally attracts professional writers, agents and producers from around the county to provide five days’ worth of intensive instruction. The cancellation—announced with a brief note on the conference’s website—was an abrupt, eleventh-hour development. Here’s hoping the SCSFe gets back on its feet for next year.
Tim McClelland’s Albuquerque-lensed sci-fi thriller Fugue State is finally getting an official DVD release. The film has received an extensive post-production overhaul since its 2008 world premiere at the Guild Cinema. In addition to all the extra editing and sound work, McClelland recorded a commentary track, which he describes as “more instructional” than analytical—kind of an in-the-trenches, DIY guide to making no-budget films. The brand-new “unrated director’s cut” is available from Burning Paradise Entertainment. You can get your very own copy at Burning Paradise Video (115 Harvard SE) or online at the Fugue State website.
Navajo filmmaker Ramona Emerson is looking to cast an independent short being shot in Tohajiilee during the last week of June. Emerson is the co-founder of Reel Indian Pictures and has been making films for 17 years. The screenplay for her new film, “Opal,” was chosen for a 2010 Sundance Institute-Ford Foundation Fellowship. The short—which Emerson hopes to parlay into a feature one day—tells the story of a young Navajo girl whose summer vacation is threatened by a small-town bully. The production is in need of Navajo / Native American girls and boys as well as adults. If you’re interested, casting director Elizabeth Gabel will hold an open casting call Sunday, May 29, at Far Horizon Studio (300 Washington SE, Suite 304) from 1 to 4 p.m. For more information about “Opal,” contact the folks at Reel Indian Pictures.