Step aside Sundance and Tribeca Film Festivals. There’s a new, local venue for film buffs.
This year marks the inaugural Gold Coast International Film Festival, from Wednesday, June 1, to Sunday, June 5, throughout North Hempstead.
The films are not yet announced, but the lineup includes studio, independent and foreign language genres.
's Business and Tourism Development Corporation is investing $250,000 in this venture, which is expected to draw between 30,000 and 40,000 people into the community.
“If each person spends $10 while they’re at the festival, they’re spending $300,000 already, “ said Ian Siegel, the BTDC's executive director.
“That’s direct revenue to local vendors,” Siegel pointed out, referring to hotels, motels, restaurants, taxi companies and so on. The town would get an added boost from tax revenue, he said.
Bruce Dern is the festival’s honoree – fitting given that the actor played Tom Buchanan in the 1974 film, “The Great Gatsby.” Keeping with this theme, the festival’s opening party will be held at the
Venues include , New Hyde Park Cinemas – Herricks Cinema 4, Manhasset Cinemas, Great Neck – Squire Cinemas, and Roslyn Cinemas. Additional screenings will take place at Adelphi University, Hofstra Uniersity, the Nassau County Museum of Art and the Great Neck Arts Center.
All films will be by invitation only, and award categories include Best Narrative Feature, Best Documentary Feature, Best Short Film, Best of NY Shorts Tribute. Other highlights include opening night film and festivities, closing night film and wrap party, panels and more.
Already, Port is kicking into gear. The event coincides with , taking place on June 2, and HarborFest on June 5. The local has approved the four-day rental of a trolley to help people get about.
“The trolley will run as a free service to the public.” Said Roy Smitheimer, the BID’s executive director.
Meanwhile, the Port Washington School District is working with the BID to determine how to tie the business community with a film shown at Schreiber High School to encourage shopping and dining on the peninsula. There’s talk about pre-festival tie-ins at the and programs at .
The festival will have plenty of volunteer opportunities for community members, including those giving out information, and greeters at the train station to welcome film lovers to town.
Sponsors to date include Nassau County, New York Foundation for the Arts, Americana Manhasset. For sponsorship and volunteer opportunities, or to learn more about the festival, visit goldcoastfilmfestival.org.