Sunday would have been Philip K. Dick’s 90th birthday, but Media Arts Santa Ana is not celebrating with cake or ice cream or even a steaming hot plate of electric sheep.
Instead, the fine folks behind the annual (and fantabulous) OC Film Fiesta are holding a mixer/information session for their first-ever Philip K. Dick Multicultural Dystopian/Sci-Fi Short Film Challenge.
(Can’t wait to see how they squeeze all that onto a theater marquee.)
The location for Sunday’s 2 p.m. mixer/info sesh–Hidden House Coffee, 511 E. Santa Ana Blvd., Santa Ana–is fitting, as it is only one block west of where the legendary author of A Scanner Darkly, The Man in High Castle and Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? lived his final years.
Dick suffered a stroke and was found unconscious on the floor of his Santa Ana home on Feb. 18, 1982. A week later, he suffered another stroke in the hospital, which led to brain death. Dick died on March 2, 1982, after being taken off life support. He was only 53.
He was not only a giant on the printed page as his work was adapted for the films Blade Runner, Total Recall, Minority Report, The Adjustment Bureau and A Scanner Darkly. The series The Man in The High Castle and Philip K. Dick’s Electric Dreams currently stream on Amazon Prime.
Perhaps there are future contributors to those shows or other Dick-related projects out there who could get their starts entering the short film challenge, which is open to youth, students and adults.
“This short film competition invites works up to five minutes that re-imagine, celebrate, update and/or are inspired by the vision of Philip K. Dick, and examine the world we live in and our possible futures,” read the contest guidelines. “Because of Philip K. Dick’s influence on the international creative community, we are placing a special emphasis on multicultural stories and perspectives, set in a wide variety of communities.”
Indeed, Media Arts Santa Ana is especially reaching out to “communities that have been traditionally underrepresented in science fiction, including Latinx, Native American, African American, Asian and other people of color or marginalized groups.” And if you are a youth or Santa Ana resident, entry fees are waived thanks to support from the Santa Ana Investing in the Artists Grant.
Hop to it: Deadline to submit is Friday, Jan. 28, 2019.
Work will be showcased at the 2019 Philip K. Dick Film Festival in Santa Ana, according to organizers.
Matt Coker has been engaging, enraging and entertaining readers of newspapers, magazines and websites for decades. He spent the first 13 years of his career in journalism at daily newspapers before “graduating” to OC Weekly in 1995 as the paper’s first calendar editor. He went on to be managing editor, executive editor and is now senior staff writer.