Great Neck Arts Center Presents GOLD COAST INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL in May 2012

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Regina Keller Gil, Executive Director and Founder of The Great Neck Arts Center and the Gold Coast International Film Festival, is pleased announced today that the acclaimed long running "Furman Film Series," is getting a new name - THE GOLD COAST INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL'S FURMAN FILM SERIES.

In addition, the Gold Coast International Film Festival welcomes a new Festival Director - film and media curator, L. Somi Roy, who served as the Curator at Large for the festival debut in 2011.

The 2nd AnnuAl Gold COAST INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL, will be presented by the Great Neck Arts Center, with the Town of North Hempstead as Founding Sponsor, from May 2, 3, 4, 5 & 6, 2012, in Great Neck, New York and the surrounding Long Island communities of Manhasset, Roslyn and Port Washington.

"I am thrilled that our belovEd Furman Film Series is coming under the banner of our new and exciting Gold Coast InternationalFilm Festival," says Regina Keller Gil. "By joining our two film entities, it should ensure our audiences of the best and most exciting new films and programs. And, the addition of L.Somi Roy as Festival Director will strengthen and broaden our team's film industry savvy - our Director of Programming Sean McPhillips is a veteran of Miramax and other industry powerhouses - and will enhance our artistic program."

The Gold Coast International Film Festival's Furman Film Series presents a sophisticated cross-section of powerful and thought-provoking independent, art, classic, and foreign films. The series mainly hosts sneak previews of highly anticipated films prior to their theatrical release dates followed by a discussion with a relevant speaker who provides exciting insight into the film and subject matter. In addition, the Gold Coast Furman Film series presents The Conversation Series, which presents an opportunity to meet the leading actors and personalities in the film world and learn about their amazing lives and careers. Among the esteemed guests have been actors Celeste Holm, Joan Allen, Eli Wallach and Gabriel Byrne.

The Gold Coast International Film Festival's Furman Film Series kicks off on Thursday, October 6 with the French comedy hit, The Women On The 6th Floor; followed on October 19, by the high stakes financial world drama, Margin Call; and, on November 3, the Sundance favorite, Hot Coffee. Additional screening dates include November 17 and December 1. 

L. Somi Roy brings to the Gold Coast his extensive experience as a film and media curator specializing in Asian, Asian American, and non-fiction films. "I am pleased to join Regina and her wonderfully creative and dedicated team, and look forward to helping establish a stellar new international event that will take its place along side other festivals in New York." Somi is also the US Curator for the International Film Festival of India, held annually in Goa. Somi was the Film Festival Director for the Indo-American Arts Council's annual Indian film festival, in New York from 2008-2010. Somi organized the Smita Patil retrospective for the Film Society of Lincoln Center in 2010, his third film exhibition for them, which has included a retrospective of Adoor Gopalakishnan and a film series co-curated with Richard Pena on New Americans and immigration. He is currently developing exhibitions for the Film Society for Fall 2012 and the Museum of Modern Art in Fall 2013.

In addition, Somi has curated and organized over 60 film and media exhibitions and series for The Asia Society, the Whitney Museum of American Art, the American Museum of Natural History, the National Gallery of Art, the Smithsonian Institution, and for Public Television. His exhibitions have toured nationally to over 20 cities in the US. His other internationalexhibitions include Animation for the Atlanta and Beijing Olympics and for the Whitney in Mumbai and New Delhi. From 1998-2002, Somi was the Executive Director of International Film Seminars which presented the annual Robert Flaherty Film Seminars in the US, as well as seminars in Kfar Blum, Israel, and Java, Indonesia. He also conducted international projects of transnational mountain-to-mountain film projects in China and Indonesia for Appalshop, the media organization in Eastern Kentucky from 2000-2008.

Somi has taught film curating at NYU and Manhattan Marymount College and written on film and culture for Wide Angle, Artforum,International Documentary, Black Film Bulletin, Cinewave, Cinemaya, and TheDrama Review. He has given lectures at the National Geographic Society,

Smithsonian Institution, Asia Society, University ofKentucky, Royal Asiatic Society, Cambridge University, School of Oriental and African Studies at the University of London, Tata Institute of Social Science, Jawaharlal Nehru University, and Manipur University.

As Festival Director, Somi Roy will work closely with continuing Director of Programming Sean McPhillips, the Senior Programmer for the first Gold Coast in June 2011. Sean is a former Miramax VP of Acquisitions, Tribeca-selected filmmaker, film reviewer for On Demand Weekly, a panelist for New York Women in Film and Television, and juror for the Asian American International Film Festival.

Selecting content with outstanding merit, new, old, long and short, and taking advantage of the Festival's carefully selected timing and location to attract new films with award ambitions, the Gold Coast International Film Festival will support industry and galvanize local, regional and city audiences along the storied Gold Coast on the North Shore of Long Island, in a celebration of the art and influence of cinema - all minutes away from Manhattan.

Other major sponsors for the The Gold Coast International Film Festival's Furman Film Series, and the Gold Coast International Film Festival include: Jay Furman, Clearview Cinemas, NewYork Council for the Humanities, New York State Council on the Arts, Eileen& Alan Sarroff, the New York Post, Gold Coast Studios, Prudential Douglas Elliman Real Estate, Panavision New York, Deluxe Films, and the Town of North Hempstead among others.

The 2nd AnnuAl Gold Coast International Film Festival will take place May 2, 3, 4, 5 & 6, 2012, in Great Neck, New York and the surrounding Long Island communities of Manhasset, Roslyn and Port Washington.