I've spent a lot of time optimising the engine, so I would say it is very fast. The drawing of the screen is hardware accelerated (uses the GPU), and that part is basically limited by your hardware. What's your graphics card? If you have a really powerful one, you could have maybe 10,000 objects on screen and still get a decent framerate. 1000 is still a lot - if you have 32x32 textures, your graphics card is still having to push over 70 million pixels to the screen every second, assuming 75fps display - that's around 270mb of pixel data per second. Luckily graphics cards are good at just that! Also are you using pixel shaders? They can incur a large overhead for many objects.
As for events, they're not as fast since events involve more processing overhead. But it's hard to say say without knowing any more about your events. What kind of framerates, hardware, events and rendering are you using?
Oh it could be it, for some reason I can't get my computer to lead me to the specifics again but from what I remember my graphics card is alittle outdated. But the RAM was pretty good if I remember my specs well enough.
As for the events, I had two big bullets create smaller bullets every frame, the smaller bullets having no events at all. and the pixel shaders must be working because effects work just fine.