Interviews

Published on July 28th, 2019 | by Darren Paltrowitz

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Marc Brissett, Penelope Robin & Sammi Rae On The 2019 Long Beach International Film Festival

An international film festival founded in 2012, the Long Beach International Film Festival will be presenting its 8th edition later this month. Based around the Long Beach area within Nassau County, the LBIFF has a lot more to offer than great independent movies. The festival brings together top independent filmmakers, chefs (as part of the Taste On The Plaza event), live music (as part of the Concert On The Beach happening), charitable events (including Casino Night), and local business-owners.
This year’s Long Beach International Film Festival is not just centered around the boardwalk area near the Allegria Hotel, but also the Regal Lynbrook 13, Molloy College’s Madison Theatre, and the Long Beach Public Library. Other event partners include Oceanside’s SVS Fine Jewelry and Five Towns College. Meanwhile proceeds from various events will benefit the Long Beach Food & Friendship INN — a.k.a. the “Long Beach Soup Kitchen” — and the North Shore LIJ Cohen Children’s Medical Center.

I had the pleasure of doing Q&A with several participants from this year’s Long Beach International Film Festival. This includes singer/songwriter Penelope Robin, filmmaker Marc Brissett, and singer Sammi Rae Murciano of Sammi Rae & Los Vegas. More information on this year’s festival — including its sponsors, events and the people interviewed here — can be found at www.longbeachfilm.com.

How did the opportunity to get involved with the Long Beach International Film Festival come about?

Marc Brissett: I wanted to get the movie out there to see what people thought of it, and film festivals are the best way that I know of to do that. So I looked for festivals that I thought would be a good fit. There festivals all over the world but my movie is in part about New York City and some of the people in it are from Long Island, so the Long Beach International Film Festival was an easy choice for me.

Penelope Robin: I was very lucky! I have been doing various shows throughout Long Island and my publicist Rick Eberle thought this might be a good fit for my music and submitted me!

Sammi Rae Murciano: We are very honored to be a part of the Long Beach International Film Festival. The opportunity came about when we started working together as a duo. Rick Eberle, my PR, was able to get us to perform at this amazing event.

What will you be doing at this year’s Long Beach International Film Festival?

Marc Brissett: I will be at the opening press conference, I will be attending most of the special events and I believe I will be involved in a Q&A after the showing of my movie.

Penelope Robin: I will be singing some of my original songs as well as some covers accompanied by my brother Cris Wolfe who happens to be a film buff! He actually won the YoungArts Merit Award this year for a short film he did, so we are very excited to see the different films!

Sammi Rae Murciano: We will be performing reggaeton music with a Spanish/English mix.

Have you been to Long Beach aside from your prep related to the Long Beach International Film Festival?

Marc Brissett: I’ve been to Long Beach once before and I don’t really remember why, to tell you the truth.

Penelope Robin: This will actually be my first time in Long Beach! I had the chance to spend New Year’s in The Hamptons and I loved it! So I’m really excited to be here and getting to know so many other parts of Long Island!

Sammi Rae Murciano: Yes, we have been to Long Beach before for some events. Also, I filmed my music video “Unpredictable” on the boardwalk.

Long Beach International Film Festival aside, what is coming up for you?

Marc Brissett: My second feature film entitled Collusion — a comedy — should be released on DVD soon and I am looking to start on my next feature film; this one is an action movie about a bank robbery. I am looking for a big-name to star in this one.

Penelope Robin: Well I am looking forward to getting out there and continue touring! I have more shows lined up in August and in September back home in Miami. I’m hoping by next year we can add many more states and dates to the calendar!

Sammi Rae Murciano: We have a lot of new music coming soon as well as many performances, including Jones Beach.

Finally, any last words for the kids?

Marc Brissett: Dream big, dreams are everything, without them you’re just asleep. And question your limits, go find out what they are don’t let anyone tell you what they are.

Penelope Robin: I’m a kid too! So I tell kids to follow your dreams and believe in yourself! Don’t let anyone tell you you can’t or put you down… Every single person is special in a different way and we should all embrace those things that are unique in us and love them! It’s what makes us who we are!

Sammi Rae Murciano: Never give up on your dreams.


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About the Author

Darren Paltrowitz is a New York resident (and Long Island native) with over 15 years of entertainment industry experience. He began working around the music business as a teenager, interning for the manager of his favorite band Superdrag. In the years following, he has worked with a wide array of artists including OK Go, They Might Be Giants, Mike Viola, Tracy Bonham, Loudness, Rachael Yamagata, and Amanda Palmer.Darren's writing has appeared in dozens of outlets including the New York Daily News, Inquisitr, The Daily Meal, The Hype Magazine, All Music Guide, Guitar World, TheStreet.com, Format Magazine, Businessweek, The Improper, the L.A. Times, and the Jewish Journal. He is a member of the SATW and the IFWTWA organizations as a food and travel writer.Darren is also the host the recently-launched "Paltrocast With Darren Paltrowitz" podcast, as co-produced with PureGrainAudio.


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