De Niro solicits science screenplays. He offers a berth at his TriBeCa Film Festival for the winning entry

Writing a movie screenplay isn’t rocket science. Or maybe it is, if you’re Robert De Niro. Until Nov. 1, in a contest co-sponsored by the science-minded Alfred P. Sloan foundation, De Niro is seeking screenplays whose protagonists are scientists, mathematicians, or engineers. (Note to ”Star Trek” and ”Farscape” fans: Sci-fi plots are not allowed.) Two winners will be chosen, and at least one will have his or her script read aloud at De Niro’s second annual TriBeCa Film Festival next spring, with the completed film promised a screening at the festival the following year.

”What we’re doing here is really looking for the next ‘A Beautiful Mind,’ ‘Memento’ or ‘Good Will Hunting,”’ Sloan Foundation program director Doron Weber told the Associated Press. Of course, ”Memento” wasn’t about a scientist or mathematician, though maybe you had to be one to figure it out.

Submissions should include a feature-length script, a two-page synopsis and a résumé, and should be sent to the TriBeCa Film Institute, 375 Greenwich St., New York, N.Y., 10013, Attention: TriBeCa/Sloan Film Program.