Ever met an Oscar winner? Or an actual Oscar? Monday night is your chance: Catherine Martin, who won two Academy Awards for her costume and production design on last year's "The Great Gatsby," will bring both to the opening gala for the fourth annual Gold Coast International Film Festival.
Martin, who will be honored with an artist of distinction award, is helping the young festival raise its profile. Other celebrities scheduled to attend are Phylicia Rashad, Sean Young and Armand Assante, all of whom may help draw moviegoers to the festival's wide-ranging selection of films.
"It's a mixture of high profile, grass roots, glamorous and serious," founder Regina Gil says of this year's lineup. "Everyone should treat this as a special week, because once the week is over you'd have to travel far and wide to see any of these films."
Here are several highlights of the Gold Coast International Film Festival. All times listed are noon or later.
Family Film Day
(Tuesday at noon at Gold Coast Arts Center, Great Neck)
A selection of kid-friendly short films, with hands-on activities and free lunch from Anthony's Coal Fired Pizza of Great Neck. This is not a drop-off event, much as parents may wish. Children under 13 are free.
(Tuesday at 7 at LIU Post, Brookville)
The latest crime drama from Shirley-based filmmaker Fred Carpenter follows a cop (Robert Funaro) trying to avenge the deaths of two colleagues. Carpenter, Funaro and co-stars Armand Assante, Robert Clohessy and Sean Young will appear in person.
The Embrace of Aging
(Wednesday at 6:30 at Soundview Cinemas, Port Washington)
Award-winning filmmaker Keith Famie will be on hand to screen his documentary about the process of female aging. Other guest speakers will include experts from North Shore-LIJ Health System.
August Wilson: The Ground on Which I Stand
(Thursday at 7:30 at Soundview Cinemas)
A documentary on the writer whose award-winning plays ("Ma Rainey's Black Bottom," "The Piano Lesson") helped give African-Americans a central place in American theater. Phylicia Rashad and Ruben Santiago-Hudson, who appear in the film, will speak at this world premiere screening.
(Thursday at 7:30 at Squire Cinemas, Great Neck)
Avi Nesher's tongue-in-cheek Israeli noir stars comedian Adir Miller as private investigator Jacob Gittes (a big wink to "Chinatown"), who is tracking a missing rabbi. Dean Movshovitz, director of film and media at the Israeli Consulate in New York, will discuss the film.
Next Goal Wins
(Nov. 7 at 6:30 at Bow Tie Port Washington Cinemas)
In 2001, the American Samoa soccer team lost 31-0 to Australia, setting an unfortunate world record for the largest defeat ever in an international match. Filmmakers Mike Brett and Steve Jamison show how this underdog team -- virtually the worst on the planet -- turned its fortunes around.
The Great Museum
(Nov. 8 at 1:30 at Soundview Cinemas)
Vienna's Kunsthistorisches Museum, built by the Hapsburgs and opened in 1891, gets its close-up in Johannes Holzhausen's documentary, which includes interviews with just about every staffer from the general director to the cleaning crew.
Dior & I
(Nov. 9 at 1 at Soundview Cinemas)
The latest fashion documentary from filmmaker Frédéric Tcheng ("Diana Vreeland: The Eye Has to Travel") focuses on Raf Simons, newly appointed creative director at Christian Dior, who has only eight weeks to put together his very first couture collection.
GOLD COAST INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL
WHEN | WHERE Monday through Sunday at venues around the North Shore
TICKETS For most screenings, $14; passes $70-$150
INFO 516-829-2570, goldcoastfilmfestival.org