by Evelyn J. Mocbeichel
One of the East End’s most anticipated events is the Hampton International Film Festival (HIFF) and already the excitement for this year’s list of films is growing. The 26th annual HIFF runs October 4-8, 2018 over the Columbus Day weekend. What is this event? The Hamptons International Film Festival was founded to celebrate the Independent film – long, short, fiction and documentary, and to introduce a unique, varied spectrum of international films and filmmakers to the public. The Festival is committed to exhibiting films that express fresh voices and differing global perspectives, with the hope that these programs will enlighten audiences, provide invaluable exposure for filmmakers and present inspired entertainment for all. Ardent followers and movie buffs will once again be treated to outstanding films, the chance to see many of the celebrities appearing in them or directing, and the opportunity to attend workshops, lectures and seminars that delve into the world of film making. Over the years the selection committee that accepts films to this prestigious film festival have chosen ones that have gone on to be commercial successes and critically acclaimed. Some of the most successful films from the long list include The King’s Speech, 127 Hours, Black Swan, Toy Story 3, Waiting for Superman, Blue Valentine, Made in Dagenham, Miral, Slum Dog Millionaire, and The Artist among many others. Documentary, shorts and international films are also part of these richly diverse selections offered to visitors of the festival. The festival also announced that passes and packages for the 2018 festival will go on sale Wednesday, September 5th, and individual tickets will go on sale on Monday, September 24th. In addition to fine films the 26th HIFF continues with many of its special programs such as its “Conversation with…,” the annual Kodak Cinematography Master Class, Breakthrough Performers, Animation Master Class, as well as having notable talent in attendance.
Opening Night Film: Writer/Director Sara Colangelo’s The Kindergarten Teacher will be the Opening Night Film on Thursday October 4th at Guild Hall. The film stars Maggie Gyllenhaal, Parker Sevak, Rosa Salazar, and Gael García Bernal. It tells the story of a kindergarten teacher who seeks to cultivate the poetic talents of one of her students with questionable methods. Colangelo is a 2013 alumna of HIFF’s annual Screenwriters Lab. Maggie Gyllenhaal and Colangelo will both be in attendance at the festival. With over 100 films offered by HIFF the list is certainly extensive and diverse and enough choices to entice viewers of all ages and tastes. “We are elated to kick off our 26th edition of the festival with a film from one of our Screenwriters Lab alumna and to also announce an eclectic and intriguing first group of films with narratives and themes that are sure to resonate with our audiences,” said David Nugent, Artistic Director of HIFF. “To be able to include so many completed feature films from our prestigious Screenwriters Lab is truly a dream come true, especially for our opening night,” said Anne Chaisson, Executive Director of HIFF. “For eighteen years our lab has mentored over 75 screenwriters, and these three films from female directors offer diverse perspectives and have all garnered critical acclaim this year.”
The Hamptons International Film Festival greatly appreciates the support from their corporate sponsors and media partners, including premiere sponsors Audi and Out East, lead sponsors Delta Air Lines, Altour International, and Netflix, and official media partners WNBC New York, Variety, WNET/WLIW, Purist and The East Hampton Star. The festival also announced that passes and packages for the 2018 festival will go on sale Wednesday, September 5th, and individual tickets will go on sale on Monday, September 24th.
The Hamptons International Film Festival (HIFF) is a year-round 501(c)3 non-profit organization with events, screenings, film workshops, comprehensive summer programs and an annual film festival each October. The Festival is the premiere film event on New York State’s east end, and is an intimate showcase of some of the year’s best offerings in contemporary cinema from around the world. With cash and in-kind prizes handed out totaling more than $180,000, HIFF continues to attract some of the best films of the year. Selections from all of the programs continue to play an important role during awards season. 2018 marked the 8th time in a row that a film in the Festival has become the eventual Best Picture winner at the Oscars, making HIFF the only Festival on the East Coast with such a distinction. For more information, please visit www.hamptonsfilmfest.org