Movie lovers can get their fill this month with a rather eclectic offering for the serious or more casual viewer at a variety of venues. See it in the theater, at the park or even at the library.
On the marquee: cutting-edge independent shorts, animation, mainstream musicals from days gone by and nine-minute shorts created by local high school students.
• Pasco's big-screen event happens next weekend as Richey Suncoast Theatre's Thomas Meighan Project brings the Black Maria Film + Video Festival to New Port Richey for the third straight year. The international, juried competition and award tour is named for the world's first motion picture studio built by Thomas Edison in 1893. It advocates the works of independent film and video makers. The program features seven films ranging from four to 32 minutes and begins at 8 p.m. (doors open at 7:30) April 20 at Richey Suncoast Theatre, 6237 Grand Blvd. Tickets are $6 and available through tmfilmfest.com or the Richey Suncoast Box Office. (727) 842-6777.
• Of special note is the Wesley Chapel High Film Festival. Now in its 12th year, the student festival will feature a showing of the five "best picture" finalists culled from 25 schoolwide entries. A fun twist is the offbeat award ceremony, sandwiched between film showings that honors winners for best picture, best actor, actress, etc. Films are about nine minutes long. Show time is 7 p.m. April 27 at the Center for the Arts at Wesley Chapel, 30651 Wells Road. $3. For information and to check out the nominees, go to gaudetwc.com.
• Spring has sprung with Friday Night Flix this month at the New Port Richey Library, 5939 Main St. All showtimes are 8 p.m. Free. Popcorn is provided. The schedule is: today, Easter Parade; April 20, Singing in the Rain; April 27, The Producers (1968). (727) 853-1279 or npr library.org.
• The animated feature, Battle for Terra is the last in a series of Movies in the Park offered by the New Port Richey's Cultural Affairs Committee. Show starts at 7 p.m. April 20 in Sims Park in downtown New Port Richey. (In case of rain, the movie will be screened inside Queen of Peace Hall). Bring lawn chairs, blankets, picnic dinner and nonalcoholic beverages. There will be bounce houses starting at 6 p.m. (for a fee), and snacks and beverages are available for sale.
• Pasco County library branches often offer free movies for adults, children and families on a regular basis, especially on Saturday afternoons. For scheduling information, visit pascolibraries.org.
Michele Miller can be reached at [email protected]