Oscar Season’s Secret Weapon: How the Hamptons International Film Festival Has Influenced Fall Movies For 25 Years

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At the first edition of the Hamptons International Film Festival in 1993, the programmers landed an event that instantly made it stand out: a conversation between Steven Spielberg and Martin Scorsese. “That helped show the community we were for real,” artistic director David Nugent said in an interview. Twenty-five years later, nobody’s doubting HIFF’s bonafides.
Over the decades, the festival has settled into its early October weekend slot, traditionally overlapping with the New York Film Festival. That gives the exclusive Suffolk County gathering an edge during the awards season, which launches

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