By Pete Barell
LIU Post will host several Gold Coast International Film Festival events through early November. A limited number of free tickets are offered to LIU students, who must R.S.V.P. to Festival Director Caroline Sorokoff at firstname.lastname@example.org to reserve them. Post-hosted events include a screening of the documentary film Landfill Harmonic on Saturday, Nov. 7, at 7:30 p.m., and “An Evening with Morgan Spurlock” (Supersize Me) on Monday, Nov. 9, at 7:30 p.m.
The Gold Coast Arts Center Gala is tonight, Oct. 28, at 8 p.m. in the Hillwood Recital Hall. The Gala will include a special screening of the Buster Keaton short film One Week with a live musical accompaniment, followed by an awards ceremony to honor actor Navid Nagahban (Homeland), Grammy-winning musician Vince Giordano (Boardwalk Empire) and director Patricia Riggen (upcoming The 33).
The screening of Landfill Harmonic on Nov. 7, is in collaboration with the Music Department who will be having an afternoon of workshops beforehand. This documentary film chronicles the story of a Paraguayan musical group whose use of instruments made out of garbage goes viral. They navigate the larger musical world while also enduring a natural disaster that strikes the country. In addition to LIU Post students, local high school students (through Tri-M societies) will be attending the event.
The highly acclaimed Spurlock will be giving an intimate conversation about the power of documentaries and his approach to filmmaking at the Nov. 9, event, which will include a screening of his new short film Crafted. A Q and A will be conducted with the audience.
“Our tagline is ‘everyone’s invited’ and we take that very seri- ously,” said Festival Director Sorokoff. “We offer films that appeal to the wide demographic that lives in our region — including families, seniors, young adults, parents looking for ‘date night’ films, music lovers, foreign film lovers, [and] documentary fans. Plus we screen films from countries with strong representation in our region.”
“The [Gold Coast Film] Festival was founded by The Gold Coast Arts Center, a 501(c)(3) multi arts organization that for the past 20 years has been dedicated to promoting and supporting the arts through education, exhibition, performance and outreach,” continued Sorokoff. “To fulfill that mission we have a School for the Arts, a free public art gallery, a monthly concert series, and arts-in-education outreach program and a long standing film screening program that for the past 20 years has screened previews of the best new independent and festival films for one night only, with each screening followed by a Q&A.”
Senior Film major Erica Weinz is an intern for the festival, work- ing closely with Sorokoff on promotion, outreach, research and other office responsibilities. The two were introduced by Professor Susan Zeig, film department head, who helped to co-ordinate the partnership between the college and festival. Weinz noted the unique learning experience provided by the internship.
“It’s quite different than being on a film set, I don’t get to see a camera ever,” explained Weinz. “The work they do feels a lot like producing. It’s coordinating, making arrangements, finding venues, finding audiences, catering, transportation, outreach, phone calls, e-mails, etcetera. Really, it’s beneficial for any filmmaker, so they could learn and understand what it takes to put on a Festival, but more importantly, its the same amount of work that goes into making any film a great one.”
Weinz spoke of the inherent collaborative qualities of the industry and how speaking to people is a wholly important aspect of outreach. “Film isn’t just an every man for himself business,” she said. “You have to work with others to get a project done and if one person gives an attitude or someone can’t compromise, nothing is going to get done. It’s cooperation, tactfulness, and kindness that is key to making films.”
The festival runs Nov. 9-15, with venues in Roslyn, Port Washington, Brookville, Manhasset and Great Neck. More information, including screening dates and events can be found at goldcoastfilmfestival.org.