Cinephiles like myself love nothing more than first-rate film festivals. Last year, I profiled eastern PA’s inaugural New Hope Film Festival and this year my own back yard – the North Shore of Long Island hosts the first ever Gold Coast Film Festival. Though the line-up is still being finalized, the fest already has two events lined up. The first is a screening of Isabella Rosellini’s short films My Dad is 100 Years Old and Animals Distract Me. followed by a Q and A and post-screening reception. David Schwartz, curator of the Museum of the Moving Image in Queens serves as moderator. Having witnessed Schwartz speak at film discussions at least a half-dozen times I can confidently say he is one of the best and the evening promises to be a smash.
With all the hubbub over Baz Luhrmann’s remake of The Great Gatsby, the film festival is capitalizing on the momentum and is honoring veteran character actor Bruce Dern, who played Tom Buchanan opposite Robert Redford in the 1974 film. Dern, who is slated to receive the Legend Award, will be honored for his wide-ranging career, which includes appearances in HBO’s acclaimed series Big Love, The Astronaut Farmer, Monster, and Francis Ford Coppola’s upcoming Twixt Now and Sunrise, due out later this year.
According to Crain’s New York Business, Gold Coast Film Festival founder Regina Keller Gil expects at least 40,000 people for the event, which has a $1.5 million budget. Regarding the festival, Gil has said the following, “The Tribeca festival was created in a response to a need in that community, and now it owns Manhattan. People need to realize that we are not sleepy suburbia anymore. The big CEOS may work in Manhattan, but they live here.”
Sean McPhillip, a former vice president of acquisitions at Miramax, who was profiled in this blog last year, is the event’s senior programmer. Roughly 40 feature-length films have been selected and include selections from Israel, Korea and India, to name but a few countries. Stay tuned for more details!