Tag Archives: Long Island International Film Expo

LIIFE 2017 Long Island International Film Expo

From LONG ISLAND – by Ann Parry ( ann-parry.com )
July 22, 2017

Wednesday afternoon I visited the Filmmaker’s Lounge and Bellmore Movies theater, where the Long Island International Film Expo was in full swing. LIIFE was celebrating its 20th Anniversary!

Bellmore, New York, USA. 19th July 2017. Comedian LOU DIMAGGIO makes a funny face as Director BRAD KUHLMAN looks at him hamming it up, at the Long Island International Film Expo LIIFE 2017. Kuhlman directed the feature film "Where Have You Gone, Lou DiMaggio?" a documentary about DiMaggio comptemplating a comeback after being away from the stage for 20 years. (Ann Parry/Ann Parry, ann-parry.com)

Bellmore, NY, USA. 19th July 2017. Comedian LOU DIMAGGIO, hamming it up, and Director BRAD KUHLMAN, Director of “Where Have You Gone Lou DiMaggio?” participate at Long Island International Film Expo LIIFE 2017.  (© 2017 Ann Parry/Ann-Parry.com)

After capturing photos and a short video of MAGGIE WAGNER, the vivacious actor who plays Mom in the short film MOM, I spoke with TRISH APPELLO, the festival Coordinator and Secretary of the non-profit LITV/Film Foundation, which, along with the Nassau County Film Commission, presents the Festival.

When Appello told me about the feature documentary Where Have You Been, Lou DiMaggio? – which was the last filmed being screened that night and the entire festival – it sounded so interesting, I decided to return after dinner to catch it.

“MARIAM’S DAY OFF”

That night I arrived in time to first watch Mariam’s Day Off, a foreign film by Director ARSHAK AMIRBEKYAN, who filmed it in Armenia.

I found the placid-on-the-surface story about a young prostitute who ends up spending a day with an artist and his family at his art studio so emotionally compelling and poignant that it wasn’t until about half way into the short film (0:44:22 min) that I thought to myself, “Oh, it’s in black and white!”

  • Click Slideshow link at end to see more photos of LIIFE 2017
Bellmore, New York, USA. 19th July 2017. Director and writer ARSHAK AMIRBEKYAN, at microphone, speaks during a Q&A at the Long Island International Film Expo LIIFE 2017. Screened earlier that evening was "Mariam's Day Off" a short foreign film filmed in Armenia, about a young prostitue invited to an artists studio to model. Behind him at right is Director BRAD KUHLMAN. (Ann Parry/Ann Parry, ann-parry.com)

Bellmore, NY, USA. 19th July 2017. ARSHAK AMIRBEKYAN, Director of “Mariam’s Day Off” short film, speaks at LIIFE 2017.  (© 2017 Ann Parry/Ann-Parry.com)

“WHERE HAVE YOU GONE, LOU DiMAGGIO?”

The next and final screening was the documentary Where Have You Gone, Lou DiMaggio? – a feature film (75 min) directed by BRAD KUHLMAN about comedian Lou DiMaggio considering returning to comedy after being away from the stage for 20 years.

For more than one reason, I was glad Appello enthusiastically recommended seeing Where Have You Gone, Lou DiMaggio?  

For starters, it was fun to see so many of DiMaggio’s comedian friends – including Joy Behar, Richard Belzer, Rebecca Corry, Larry David, Susie Essman, Jeff Garlin, Howie Mandel, Colin Quinn, Chris Rock, Ray Romano, Jerry Seinfeld.

When Lou DiMaggio performed at Upright Citizens Brigade (a NYC school that Amy Ansalone, my daughter’s shark friend, attended) it was almost painful how spectacularly he bombed. This was in stark, memorable contrast to a later WOW performance we saw DiMaggio give after he both prepared for it and heeded advice to use his own life in his comedy.

And perhaps what made the most powerful impression on me in “Where Have You Gone, Lou DiMaggio?” was cautionary advice DiMaggio’s fellow comedian gave him about returning to stand up comedy. It reminded me of the advice my late mom gave about careers in the arts.

My mom, Mary Ann Parry, was a professional opera singer until she married (and she kept her voice till the end); my younger brother was a gifted pianist and opera singer, and I’ve loved the visual and written arts since forever. She would tell us and her voice students:

The world has more outstanding singers than it can afford to support. And the difference between the best and next best in a competition or audition can be imperceptible even to an expert – so persistence and luck often decide the career each has.

Aim to make a living in the arts only if you’re absolutely driven to AND you can handle the competition and pressure.

FILMMAKERS Q&A

For the Q&A, eight filmmakers associated with the films screened that night participated. After hearing the candid, detailed answers to the audience’s thought-provoking questions, I wished I’d arrived in time to watch all the films.

Watch the following video of comedian Lou DiMaggio at Q&A to find out these answers:

  1. Why didn’t DiMaggio need a mic to answer the audience question?
  2. What did DiMaggio find was the biggest obstacle, for himself, to making the movie?
  3. What did DiMaggio’s say when he saw the movie the first time?

Video Above: Lou DiMaggio answers Q&A question at LIIFE 2017.  [The Q&A did not take place aboard a ship on stormy seas, despite appearances to contrary.]

I was unable to attend LIIFE’s Awards Ceremony the next night, July 20th, but I smiled a big smile when I learned soon after that Where Have You Gone Lou DiMaggio? won the Best Documentary Feature award!

LIIFE:   longislandfilm.com     2017 Winners

My LIIFE 2017 images:   Lou DiMaggio video     SLIDESHOW     GALLERY

LIIFE 2016 Long Island International Film Expo

From LONG ISLAND – by Ann Parry (ann-parry.com)
July 23, 2016

The 19th Annual Long Island International Film Festival kicked off its Awards Ceremony this Thursday with Host Kevin Brown (Dot Com in 30 Rock) welcoming filmmakers and film lovers.

Bellmore, New York, USA. July 21, 2016. The19th Annual Long Island International Film Expo Awards Ceremony, LIIFE 2016, is held at the historic Bellmore Movies. LIIFE was called one of the 25 Coolest Film Festivals in the World by MovieMaker Magazine. (Ann Parry/Ann Parry, ann-parry.com)

Bellmore, New York, USA. July 21, 2016. The19th Annual Long Island International Film Expo Awards Ceremony, LIIFE 2016, is held at the historic Bellmore Movies. (© 2016 Ann Parry/Ann-Parry.com)

Then Brown served his first helping of topical humor – notably about a certain national political convention that, like LIIFE 2016, was in its final night.

Bellmore, New York, USA. July 21, 2016. Actor KEVIN BROWN (Dot Com in 30 Rock) is again host at the 19th Annual Long Island International Film Expo Awards Ceremony, LIIFE 2016, held at the historic Bellmore Movies. LIIFE was called one of the 25 Coolest Film Festivals in the World by MovieMaker Magazine. (Ann Parry/Ann Parry, ann-parry.com)

Bellmore, New York, USA. July 21, 2016. Actor KEVIN BROWN hosts 19th Annual Long Island International Film Expo Awards Ceremony, LIIFE 2016, held at Bellmore Movies. (© 2016 Ann Parry/Ann-Parry.com)

Singers Robbie Rosen, from neighboring Merrick, and Sarah Barrios, each a mere three years older than LIIFE itself, sang solo and together. Their duet “Chains” – which they performed both that night and in the Musical Video that went on to win that category – was one of restrained raw emotion and distinctive, complimentary singing styles.

Bellmore, New York, USA. July 21, 2016. Singers ROBBIE ROSEN, of American Idol top 8 Boys from Merrick, and SARAH BARRIOS perform the duet "Chains" at the19th Annual Long Island International Film Expo Awards Ceremony, LIIFE 2016, held at the historic Bellmore Movies. LIIFE was called one of the 25 Coolest Film Festivals in the World by MovieMaker Magazine. (Ann Parry/Ann Parry, ann-parry.com)

Bellmore, New York, USA. July 21, 2016. Singers ROBBIE ROSEN and SARAH BARRIOS sing duet “Chains” at Long Island International Film Expo Awards Ceremony, LIIFE 2016. (© 2016, Ann Parry/Ann-Parry.com)

Bernhard Rammerstorfer, from Austria, accepted the Alan Fortunoff Humanitarian Award for his documentary Taking the Stand, which he directed, produced and wrote to share the “Testimonies of Holocaust Survivors and Victims of Nazi Tyranny.”  Before leaving the stage, Rammerstorfer gave LIIFE a bottle of Organic Austrian Plum Schnaps,  which he cheerfully described at length.

Bellmore, New York, USA. July 21, 2016. BERNHARD RAMMERSTORFER accepts "Alan Fortunoff Humanitarian Award" for documentary"Taking the Stand" which he was producer, director and writer of, at The19th Annual Long Island International Film Expo Awards Ceremony, LIIFE 2016, held at the historic Bellmore Movies. LIIFE was called one of the 25 Coolest Film Festivals in the World by MovieMaker Magazine. (Ann Parry/Ann Parry, ann-parry.com)

Bellmore, New York, USA. July 21, 2016.  Austrian BERNHARD RAMMERSTORFER accepts Alan Fortunoff Humanitarian Award for his documentary “Taking the Stand” at LIIFE 2016. (© 2016 Ann Parry/Ann-Parry.com)

Actor Cathy Moriarity (Vikki LaMotta in Raging Bull) gave an affectionate introduction to LIIFE’s Lifetime Achievement Award honoree, Ed Asner, who’s best known to my generation as cranky, lovable Lou Grant in The Mary Tyler Moore Show, and to my grandson as widower Carl in Pixar’s animated Up.

Bellmore, New York, USA. July 21, 2016. Actress CATHY MORIARITY, who was Vikki LaMotta in Raging Bull when she was a teenager, introduces Lifetime Achievement honoree Ed Asner at the 19th Annual Long Island International Film Expo Awards Ceremony, LIIFE 2016, held at the historic Bellmore Movies. LIIFE was called one of the 25 Coolest Film Festivals in the World by MovieMaker Magazine. (Ann Parry/Ann Parry, ann-parry.com)

Bellmore, New York, USA. July 21, 2016. Actress CATHY MORIARITY introduces Lifetime Achievement honoree Ed Asner at the 19th Annual Long Island International Film Expo Awards Ceremony. (© 2016 Ann Parry/Ann-Parry.com)

Not coincidentally, the documentary My Friend Ed – a portrait of Asner the actor and activist, by director and producer Sharon K Baker and co-writers Baker and Daniel R. Collins – made its Long Island debut at LIIFE 2016.

Bellmore, New York, USA. July 21, 2016. Actor ED ASNER, who portrayed Lou Grant in Mary Tyler Moore Show, receives the Lifetime Achievement Award, at the 19th Annual Long Island International Film Expo Awards Ceremony, LIIFE 2016, held at the historic Bellmore Movies. LIIFE was called one of the 25 Coolest Film Festivals in the World by MovieMaker Magazine. (Ann Parry/Ann Parry, ann-parry.com)

Bellmore, New York, USA. July 21, 2016. Actor ED ASNER receives the Lifetime Achievement Award at the 19th Annual Long Island International Film Expo Awards Ceremony, LIIFE 2016. (© 2016 Ann Parry/Ann-Parry.com)

Long Island’s own Angela Anton – the Publisher of Anton Community Newspapers, and a philanthropist and volunteer, including Board President of the Nassau County Museum of Art – received the Humanitarian Award.

Bellmore, New York, USA. July 21, 2016. ANGELA ANTON accepts the Humanitarian Award at the 19th Annual Long Island International Film Expo Awards Ceremony, LIIFE 2016, held at the historic Bellmore Movies. Angela Susan Anton is the Publisher and CEO of Anton Media Group, the largest privately owned newspaper company in New York State. LIIFE was called one of the 25 Coolest Film Festivals in the World by MovieMaker Magazine. (Ann Parry/Ann Parry, ann-parry.com)

Bellmore, New York, USA. July 21, 2016. ANGELA ANTON accepts Humanitarian Award at 19th Annual Long Island International Film Expo Awards Ceremony, LIIFE 2016, at the Bellmore Movies. (© 2016 Ann Parry/Ann-Parry.com)

LIIFE’s three surviving co-founders each spoke: Debra Markowitz, the Nassau County Film Commissioner; and Anne Stampfel and husband Henry Stampfel,  co-owners of the historic Bellmore Movies where the Awards Ceremony was held.

Bellmore, New York, USA. July 21, 2016. At podium, actor KEVIN BROWN (Dot Com in 30 Rock) once again is host at the19th Annual Long Island International Film Expo Awards Ceremony, LIIFE 2016, held at the historic Bellmore Movies. LIIFE was called one of the 25 Coolest Film Festivals in the World by MovieMaker Magazine. (Ann Parry/Ann Parry, ann-parry.com)

Bellmore, New York, USA. July 21, 2016. Actor KEVIN BROWN hosts 19th Annual Long Island International Film Expo Awards Ceremony, LIIFE 2016, held at the historic Bellmore Movies (© 2016 Ann Parry/Ann-Parry.com)

Long Island International Film Expo:  slideshow  |  gallery

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LIIFE 2015 Long Island International Film Expo

From LONG ISLAND – by Ann Parry (ann-parry.com)
July 20, 2015

LIIFE 2015 was held at historic Bellmore Movies. The 18th Annual Long Island International Film Expo, including screenings, panels, parties & more, spanned July 8-16, with Official Opening Night & Tech Awards on July 10th, and the Awards Ceremony on July 16th.

Bellmore, New York, USA. 16th July 2015. KEVIN BROWN, DOT COM on the TV series 30 ROCK, hosts the LIIFE Awards Ceremony at Bellmore Movies. It was the 18th Long Island International Film Expo. (Ann Parry/Ann Parry, ann-parry.com)

Bellmore, New York, USA. 16th July 2015. KEVIN BROWN hosts the LIIFE Awards Ceremony at Bellmore Movies. (© 2015 Ann Parry/Ann-Parry.com)

Actor Kevin Brown, Dot Com from the TV series 30 Rock, hosted the Awards Ceremony; presenters included actors Lukas Hassel (In Montauk) and Marilyn Chris (TV’s One Life to Live), and actor John Amos was an LIFTF Lifetime Creative Achievement Honoree for his work, including the groundbreaking miniseries Roots. Debra Markowitz, Nassau County Film Commissioner, was the Director of LIIFE 2015.

Bellmore, New York, USA. July 16, 2015. Actor LUKAS HASSEL and DEBORAH MARKOWITZ, Nassau County Film Commissioner, are on the Red Carpet at the 18th Annual LIIFE Awards Ceremony, at the Bellmore Movies. Markowitz is the director of of the Long Island International Film Expo. (Ann Parry/Ann Parry, ann-parry.com)

Bellmore, NY, USA. July 16, 2015. Actor LUKAS HASSEL, a Presenter, and DEBORAH MARKOWITZ, Nassau County Film Commissioner, are on the Red Carpet at LIIFE Awards Ceremony, at Bellmore Movies. (© 2015 Ann Parry/Ann-Parry.com)

Henry Stampfel, owner of Bellmore Movie Theater, shared background about the theater, which was built in 1912 and is Long Island’s oldest operating theater —  and has been part of my family’s entertainment life for over half a century.

Bellmore, New York, USA. July 16, 2015. HENRY STAMPFEL, owner of Bellmore Movies, and NICOLE GONZALEZ, pose at the 18th Annual LIIFE Awards Ceremony. The Long Island International Film Festival was held at historic Bellmore Movies. (Ann Parry/Ann Parry, ann-parry.com)

Bellmore, NY, USA. July 16, 2015. HENRY STAMPFEL, owner of Bellmore Movies, and NICOLE GONZALEZ, a staff member, pose at 18th Annual LIIFE Awards Ceremony, held at Bellmore Movies. (© 2015 Ann Parry/Ann-Parry.com)

If films are an important part of your LIIFE, the annual Long Island International Film Expo is made for you.

LIIFE 2015 Ceremonies – bit.ly/LIIFE2015AParry  – Official Opening Night, 7/10 + Awards Ceremony, 7/16.

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