Roswell Mayor Del Jurney, left, visits with Renee Roach, center, city marketing direc tor and NM Film Office Liaison, at the 2014 Roswell Film Fest & Cosmicon kick-off event on Friday at the Holiday Inn. (Randal Seyler Photo)
A new young filmmakers event geared toward high school students will be added to this year’s Roswell Film Fest and Cosmicon, event officials announced Friday.
Alan Trever, Eastern New Mexico University-Roswell film program director and founder of the Roswell Sci-Fi Film Festival, announced the New Mexico Young Filmmakers High School Invitational to a packed conference room at the Holiday Inn.
“We want to open this up to high school students from around the state, to bring young people here and introduce them to our program,” Trever said.
High school students will be invited to submit 6-12 minute long sci-fi or fantasy films based on original ideas, and selected films will be shown at the Roswell Filmfest & Cosmicon’s Awards gala and be eligible for both the Young Film Makers Award and the Audience Choice Awards.
Entry to the contest is free and unlimited entries per high school are allowed, although entries are limited to one per student, Trever said.
“We want to be able to showcase our program to high school students,” Trever said. In the past, students from other colleges have participated in aspects of the film festival, but the program has not always been able to draw those students to ENMU-Roswell.
“This is a great program and it can put people to work in the film industry,” Trever said. He noted that the ENMU-Roswell program is not just for high school students or young people.
“I had one student who was 50 years old, and he had worked in the food industry all his life,” Trever said. “He came to me and asked what he could do, and I told him that the film industry is full of catering services.” The student went through the media arts program and now is a successful film caterer.
“The film industry is growing in Roswell,” Mayor Del Jurney said. “A lot of that has to do with what Alan Trever has done for this community.”
Jurney said he and the city’s leadership support the annual film festival.
Other events returning this summer will be the Digital Film Shootout, held June 20-27, the Sci-Fi Film Festival, which will be held June 27-29, and the Cosmicon, which officials announced would be held July 4 weekend this year to coincide with the UFO Festival.
The Film Fest & Cosmicon kick off concluded with a mixer, featuring Dirk Norris of the New Mexico Film Foundation.
Today, there will be a film festival booth at the 5th annual Baby Boomer Health and Business Expo, which is being held at the Roswell Convention Center from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Following the expo, there will be a showcase of the award-winning short films from past film festivals from 6 to 10 p.m. at the Holiday Inn in Roswell. The film showcase is free and open to the public.