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Fast and furriest festival: Second annual fest showcases 22 films about four-legged friends

A still image from the film “PETS 4D!” that is part of this year’s Furry Burque Film Festival.

Close encounters of the furry kind is taking over the Guild Cinema.

The second annual Furry Burque Film Festival takes place from 1 to 3 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 16 and Sunday, Nov. 17. The festival will showcase 22 films, all with a four-legged friend theme. The films range from documentaries to dramas to comedies. There will 13 shown on Nov. 16 and nine shown on Nov. 17.

Five of the 22 filmmakers are from New Mexico and will be attending the event.

“Desiree Cawley who works at Albuquerque Animal Welfare, she’s the marketing director there, she submitted a little PSA,” said Lisa McKitrick, festival director. “That’s how we open the festival. Karen Cunningham who directed ‘Cat Tails-Tales,’ a short documentary about kitties. Amanda Wang who directed a documentary called ‘Clovis’ Big Hike – A Dogumentary’, she will be there. It’s about how her and her dog Clovis did a 20-mile hike in New York’s Adirondack Park and they were happy seeing green scenery. Sue Jimenez who submitted a short comedy about her cat Shadow and his fastidious litter box habits. The other is we have some people coming from Farmington who directed ‘Renzo on Tuesday,’ which is a short film about their dog Renzo. Kind of a day in the life of Renzo and there were three young ladies involved in the creation of that.”

There will be a “fun” mix of films, according to McKitrick.

“This year we have kind of a longish one about horses and equestrian events, which is a really spectacular documentary,” McKitrick said. “Primarily, we were thinking of cats and dogs with the festival but this a really excellent documentary. We have a 24-minute action comedy that has a cast of thousands in it. It has the most diverse cast you will ever see in a film all year. That one is called ‘PETS 4D!’ It’s just a 2D film but that one is a lot of fun. It was filmed entirely with rescue animals.”

Proceeds from the festival and fundraising raffles will benefit Second Chance, a local nonprofit rescue for dogs and cats. Donations of pet food, pet supplies, gift cards, monetary donations and anything to help out Second Chance also will be accepted.

“They are ready to take in pets that many rescues would not consider because they’re older pets, they may have some medical issues, they find a lot of stray animals in need,” McKitrick said. “They find dogs that are not immediately adoptable necessarily and give them a little more time to find a perfect home … They help a lot of other rescue groups as they can. We like that they’re not afraid to get their hands dirty and put in some real effort to help dogs and cats in need of assistance from someone to find a new home.”

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