The Stony Brook Film Festival gets underway at the Staller Center


The 26th installment of the Stony Brook Film Festival, Long Island’s largest film fest, is now fully underway at Staller Center for the Arts, located at the University of Stony Brook campus.

The festival, presented by Island Federal, runs from Thursday, July 22, through Saturday, July 31.

The festival kicks off with the world premiere of The 5th Man, a documentary on Paul Limmer, a former track coach at Bellmore’s Mepham High School.

During his 50-year career there, Limmer racked up hundreds of wins, though director Trey Nelson focuses on the story of all the other kids — the ones who never felt “seen” — until Paul Limmer came into their lives.

The film will be preceded by Feeling Through, an Oscar-nominated short featuring deaf-blind actor Robert Tarango of Selden. That’s just the start. The festival lineup packs 35 films from across the world

This is one of the first film festivals in the U.S. to announce a full return after the height of the pandemic, and it brings in filmmakers, cast, and crew to field questions after screenings, adding a unique interactive dimension to the experience.

In addition to the live and in-person festival, the Stony Brook Film Festival will be screening the festival virtually after the live version wraps up. The films will be available on IndieFlix Festivals from Aug. 5 to Aug. 30.


Click here for the schedule and descriptions of all the 35 films on tap.

COVID protocols

At this time, masks are optional for guests who are fully vaccinated. For guests who are unvaccinated or those who are not fully vaccinated, the organizers ask that you continue to wear face masks at all times inside the building.

Photo: A scene from Anchorage, screening Sunday, July 25 at 9:15 p.m.