Last summer's hi-dive-sponsored video scavenger hunt may have had a more lasting effect than organizers initially intended. The event brought together local filmmaking aficionados in a one-day quest to document a laundry list of strange things around town -- including, but not limited to, filming themselves stealing something from a child. And it inspired participants Mary Grace Legg, Emily Crenshaw and Radidovan Anzulovic to organize a film gathering of their own. The result is the 500indie Music-Video Competition, taking place tonight at 8 p.m. at the hi-dive, 7 South Broadway.
"We wanted to try to build a better networking community between local bands and local filmmakers," Legg says. "We're hoping that this will be a fun way of getting different types of artists together to support each other and find more work for themselves."
The only stipulation that Legg and company placed on music-video entries was that they be directed by someone from Colorado. Beyond that, budding Spike Jonzes were allowed to create a video for any song they pleased, as long as they got permission from the band to use its original composition.
"At first, it was slow going," Legg says, "but we've already got around fourteen music videos, with more still coming in."
Three bills gets you in the door and earns you a spot at the judges' table (audience ballots will determine the winner). For details, call 303-521-6935. -- Adam Cayton-Holland
The Opus Fantasy fest beams up imaginations.
Don't fret: For this weekend's Opus Fantasy Arts Festival, you needn't speak Klingon. Costumes are encouraged, but thorough knowledge of obscure sci-fi languages is completely optional. That's because this three-year-old fest is more for the people behind the scenes of some of our favorite stories and shows, not just the famous faces. "There are events out there for Star Wars and Star Trek, but there wasn't one that supports the arts, that supports the artists and writers who make all of these fantastical things come true," says Opus creator Rion Bergquist. "There were some down in the Southeast, but I wanted one here."
From 3 p.m. today to 8 p.m. Sunday, the Four Points by Sheraton, 6363 East Hampden Avenue, will crawl with artists of all ilks attending seminars such as "Costuming for the Non-Twiggy," "Horror Make-up 101" and "Vampire Rules" and indulging in Redstone Meadery mead and honey wine, robot battles, unarmored sword combat, concerts and frivolity. There's even a Star Wars costume contest on Sunday night in honor of the release of Episode III: Revenge of the Sith.
"It should be rowdy, noisy and a lot of fun," Bergquist says.
Now, that's a festival I can get behind.
For information, a schedule of events and tickets, $15 to $38, visit www.opusfest.com. -- Amy Haimerl
Rev and Ride
The big wheels keep on turnin' down at the Breakdown Book Collective and Community Space, 1409 Ogden Street. Metro-area road rebels are invited to steer their mean machines over to Breakdown's back parking lot at sundown this evening for the first Bike-in Movie night of the summer. Breakdown's inaugural dissident-flick pick is French filmmaker Jean-Pierre Melville's 1950 story of teenage malcontents, Les Enfants Terribles, which will roll for 105 minutes. Breakdown hopes to contribute to protecting the environment while projecting some social consciousness. It's a Schwinn-Schwinn situation for everyone. A $5 donation is suggested. For more information, call 303-832-7952 or visit www.breakdowncollective.org. -- Kity Ironton
Rescue Me, Mr. February
It's hot, hot, hot when firefighters compete for their calendar.
Watch Colorado's hottest firefighters tonight as they burn down the house at the Hyatt Regency Tech Center, 7800 East Tufts Avenue, to vie for a page in the 2006 Colorado Firefighter Calendar. Proceeds go to Fired Up for Kids, the nonprofit that produces the calendar to benefit the Children's Hospital Burn Center.
Beginning at 7 p.m., contestants -- including one fireman serving in Iraq who will compete by video -- will strut their stuff down a runway and answer questions from judges. Competitors wear dress uniforms during the first round; for the second, they sport their "bunkers," those suspendered yellow bottoms.
What will turn the heads of Penny Parker, Steve "Mudflap" McGrew and other judges? "Charisma, personality and community involvement," says Fired Up for Kids' Barbara Brooks. Smoldering eyes and washboard abs won't hurt, either.