2021 Festival Date to be announced

Open Call for Submissions Begins April of 2021:

Fourth Annual Short Film Showcase Seeks More Local Talent


We will be accepting short films (thirty minutes or less) which were created over the past year in New Mexico. 

Impresario Joe West and author Andrew Wice invite all aspiring and established local filmmakers to submit a short film for consideration in the Madrid Film Festival, a Theater of Death Production.


The third Annual Madrid Film Festival, appealingly hosted by Mr. West and Mr. Wice, will be screened in August of 2021. Filmmakers whose work is accepted by the festival will receive free tickets and refreshments, and be invited to an exclusive VIP reception. 


We are also proud to announce that because of a grant from The Kind World Foundation, this festival is able to offer a $500 CASH AWARD to the film that wins the Festival’s grand prize, Le Palme d’Coal. Another $500 is awarded to the winner of the best local film (15 mile radius of Madrid). The films that win an award become eligible to join the Madrid Film Festival on Tour, going on the road to audiences all over the state.





Submit an entry by including a link to your film (youtube, vimeo, dropbox, etc) in an email to:  info@theaterofdeath.org. Please indicate the genre in which your film belongs (comedy, drama, thriller, music video, documentary, animation or non-traditional).  Multiple entries are accepted and there is no submission fee. Please include an explanation of how your film is connected to New Mexico. To be eligible for the “Oscar” Huber local Madrid film award, it must be made within fifteen miles of Madrid, New Mexico.

All submissions must have proper licensing for the use of music or direct permission from the musical artist.

Mission Statement of the Madrid Film Festival

The Madrid Film Festival seeks to encourage local filmmaking by showcasing the best short films produced in New Mexico each year. Supporting amateur and minority filmmakers is a particular emphasis, especially in the small town of Madrid where educational workshops can directly reach young aspiring filmmakers.



Strategic Vision

To pursue this mission in perpetuity, the Madrid Film Festival will inspire ever-increasing participation. More film submissions means a better-quality festival, which will result in larger audiences, which will provoke more film submissions, and so on. Creating that positive feedback loop is the core strategy for the festival’s self-sustaining, steady growth.



History of the Festival

Local musician and thespian Joe West had the idea of a local short film festival and brought it to author Andrew Wice; when they added technical wizard Doug Speer, the trio of producers balanced together. The inaugural 2018 festival was a surprise runaway sold-out hit. They expanded the 2019 festival into three full days, and then took the winning films on a successful short tour around New Mexico. The 2020 Madrid Film Festival promises to feature the absolute best short films made this year, and the Film Festival On Tour will bring the award-winning films to charming yet underserved communities all over the state.

The historic Engine House Theater is a beautifully rustic performance space, the crown jewel for the cultural gem of the mining district that is The Mineshaft Tavern. It is located at 2846 State Highway 14 in Madrid, New Mexico. 

Joe West’s Theater of Death, now in its eighth year, produces an annual anthology of dark horror/comedy plays, featuring original live music and macabre melodramatics, inspired by the Grand Guignol Theatre of Paris. The next Theater of Death plays will be terrifying audiences around Halloween, 2020. 

Joe West is an award-winning songwriter, performer and director. In addition to his music schedule and many albums (including his newest, Rodeo of the Soul), he propitiously founded the Theater of Death production company. Please visit www.joewestmusic.com and www.theaterofdeath.org. 

Andrew Wice is a novelist and screenwriter. He is the author of seven novels, including To The Last Drop (Bäuu Press, Colorado, 2008), as well as the best-selling smartphone app, The Oral History Tour of Madrid, NM. Please visit www.AndrewWice.com.

Doug Speer is a retired producer, creative director and photographer. After 32 years in corporate communications, he joined the Theater of Death in 2018 as Technical Director for the inaugural Madrid Film Festival and continued with the fall productions of Invasion!, Xoe Fitzgerald and Freakatorium.