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Hamptons Life

Sep 27, 2010 4:34 PMPublication: The East Hampton Press & The Southampton Press

Hamptons International Film Festival opens October 7

Sep 27, 2010 4:34 PM

Mr. Franco will be discussing his role in Boyle’s “127 Hours,” about the hiker who cut off his own arm to survive being trapped by rocks—but that was not the initial reason why he is at HIFF. “We actually invited him based on the short film he directed, ‘A Clerk’s Tale,’” said Ms. Arikian. “Once he said he would be here for that showing, we asked him to go a step further and give a talk about directing versus acting, and he agreed. And then we got the Danny Boyle film, so it all worked out, thanks to James.”

As in past years, the 2010 edition of HIFF is full of documentaries, short films, works of animation, the “Conflict and Resolution” series, and special programs and panels such as the Sloan Screenplay Readings. New this year is “Midterm Madness,” a group of films prompted by this year’s midterm elections, plus “Eye On Canadian Films,” and “Views From Long Island.”

Of particular interest is a salute to the independent producer Ben Barenholtz that will include a 20th anniversary screening of “Miller’s Crossing” at Guild Hall on Sunday, October 10, at 1 p.m. Expected to attend to discuss the film are the directors, Joel and Ethan Coen, and cast members Frances McDormand, John Turturro, and Marcia Gay Harden.

When (almost) all is said and screened, there are awards to be given out. This year’s presentations will take place at Guild Hall on Sunday, October 10, at 6 p.m., hosted by Bonnie Grice of 88.3 FM and Peconic Public Broadcasting.

Then it will be time for HIFF staffers and volunteers to exhale. It has been a difficult couple of years for many film festivals because of the economy, but the Hamptons event has persevered through hard work and innovations.

“This year is not much better, but it is better than last year,” Ms. Arikian said of the economics. “We worked very hard at forming partnerships with other organizations that don’t cost either of us any money—Guild Hall with the SummerDoc Series, the Parrish Art Museum, and we’re talking to Watermill Center.

“Our budget has not expanded at all. Last year, our sponsorship revenue dropped 32 percent, and there has been some rebound this year. We’re doing careful growth. This year is our biggest festival so far, yet we have not increased our staff. More partnerships has been the key. A number of places here have been very good to us.”

In addition to the schedule, hamptonsfilmfest.org has information on purchasing tickets and passes.

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