Gold Coast International Film Festival returns to the North Shore

Gold Coast International Film Festival returns to the North Shore
(Photo courtesy of the Gold Coast International Film Festival)

The Gold Coast International Film Festival is coming back this November, with a showcase of history, star power and films for all ages.

“We try to appeal to and represent the various populations within our region,” said Caroline Sorokoff, the festival director.

The film festival, produced by the nonprofit Gold Coast Arts Center in Great Neck, began  in 2011, bringing a combination of independent movies, Hollywood hits, celebrities and events. It is also the last major film festival on the East Coast before awards season, according to the center.

This year’s lineup features more than 80 movies, with a mix of older films, short and feature-length movies, foreign films and even ones with Oscar buzz, Sorokoff said. More than half are Long Island premieres, ranging from Burt Reynold’s film “Dog Years” and “Bill Nye: Science Guy” to the Iranian film “Gholam” and the comedy-drama “King of Peking.”

Young filmmakers in the third annual Young Filmmakers Program, a partnership between the Gold Coast Arts Center and Hofstra University, will showcase their work at the Soundview Cinema in Port Washington on Sunday, Nov. 12, at 1:30 p.m.

All of these events span several venues, including Bowtie Cinemas in Port Washington, Great Neck, Manhasset and Roslyn, public libraries in Great Neck and Port Washington, the Cinema Arts Centre, Soundview Cinemas and more.

Helping kick off the Gold Coast International Film Festival – lasting from Nov. 7 to Nov. 14 – is the opening of a gallery on Nov. 5 focusing on Tony Vaccaro, a photographer who captured the European front and later became renowned for his fashion and lifestyle photos.

“Underfire: The Untold Story of Tony Vaccaro,” a documentary focusing on the photographer’s life, will accompany the exhibition at 3:30 p.m., as will a question and answer session with Vaccaro.

Also premiering that day is “Supergirl,” the story of Naomi Kutin, a 9-year-old Orthodox Jewish girl who breaks a powerlifting world record, at 3 p.m. There, director Jessie Auritt, Naomi Kutin and her parents will hold a question and answer session.

Making Memories at the Movies, a program using classic film clips and guided conversation geared towards those with memory loss and their care partners, will return on Nov. 8 at 11 a.m.

Later that night at 7:30 p.m., the Bowtie Great Neck Squire Cinemas theater will show “Ben-Gurion Epilogue,” a documentary about Israel’s founding father David Ben-Gurion reflecting on his life and legacy. Alon Ben-Gurion, his grandson, will be in attendance.

Then a screening on Thursday, Nov. 9, at 7:30 p.m. of “Bombshell: The Hedy Lamarr Story” will kick off the Gold Coast Arts Center’s new Science on Screen program, Sorokoff said.

“A filmmaker has put together this really loving tribute and fascinating story from the film legend angle and the scientist and inventor angle,” Sorokoff said.

Another highlight comes on Nov. 12 with the screening of “Dare to Be Different,” which gives a behind-the-scenes look into the early days of the WLIR radio station.

“This is a Long Island story, so it’s going to be a really fantastic event,” Sorokoff said.

“Darkest Hour,” a British war drama featuring Gary Oldman as Winston Churchill during World War II, will be screened at the Soundview Cinema on Nov. 13 at 7 p.m. There, Edwina Sandys, Churchill’s granddaughter, will host a question and answer session.

Another event is a 60th anniversary screening of “Pal Joey,” for which Frank Sinatra won a Golden Globe for his role as Joey Evans, on Nov. 11 at Soundview Cinema. In addition to the screening, his granddaughter Amanda Erlinger will be in attendance.

A full brochure of the Gold Coast International Film Festival’s offerings can be found online at

Anyone seeking more information on the Gold Coast Arts Center and its programming can visit its website at or call 516-829-2570.

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