The Hamptons International Film Festival will be on the lookout for a new chief as five-year vet Karen Arikian leaves the scene. Her replacement has their work cut out for them. It has been hard for the Hamptons fest to stamp itself as important or singular. Hatched as a way to extend the tourist season for Long Island’s East End when the socialite set shutter their summer homes and head back to Manhattan, the event unfortunately falls between the Toronto and New York film festivals. Those are unbeatable showcases for Oscar-season films and they get all the top films. But the Hamptons is a pleasant festival, and maybe it’s sufficient as just one more stop along the trail for award-season wannabe films. Especially the art house fare that can use all the promotional opportunities they can get. Here’s the release:

East Hampton, NY – November 13, 2012 – The Hamptons International Film Festival announces that Karen Arikian who has served as the Executive Director of the Festival for five years, will be leaving her post at the end of November to pursue new opportunities.

“I have been very fortunate to have led this wonderful organization since 2008,” said Karen Arikian, “and I leave knowing that the Festival is stronger than ever, having just completed its 20th Anniversary edition.”

“Karen has successfully led us through five outstanding festivals, and we are grateful for her many contributions, which have helped make the Festival one of the foremost celebrations of independent film in this country.” said Stuart Match Suna, Chairman of the Hamptons International Film Festival Board of Directors. “On behalf of the Board and all of the Festival’s many participants and supporters, I thank Karen for a job well done and wish her the best in her future endeavors.”

Arikian will continue in her roles as U.S./East Coast Delegate for the Berlin International Film Festival and U.S. Consultant for European Film Promotion.