Edward Burns' new film has LI premiere

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Writer-director Edward Burns spoke at a preview of his Long Island-based drama "The Fitzgerald Family Christmas" Thursday night as part of the second annual Gold Coast International Film Festival.

"This was its U.S. premiere," Burns said afterward at the Port Washington Cinemas, "but more importantly, its Long Island premiere."

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The film, about a dysfunctional Irish-American clan celebrating an emotionally fraught holiday, stars Connie Britton, Kerry Bishé and Noah Emmerich; Long Beach native Ed Lauter plays the family's flawed patriarch. Burns, who also stars as the favorite son, Gerry, shot the movie at numerous Long Island locations, including a bar in Lynbrook, a home in Valley Stream's Gibson neighborhood (where Burns grew up) and his sister's house in Rockville Centre. "You'll see T-shirts that are shout-outs to the Island," Burns said. "We went online and made a Rockaways' Playland T-shirt."

Burns later attended a reception at Haute Durvó in Roslyn, where he received the festival's Artist of Distinction award.

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