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Independent Ed: Inside a Career of Big…
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Independent Ed: Inside a Career of Big Dreams, Little Movies, and the… (2015)

by Edward Burns

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Now I will be looking for this author/actor/writer/director/producer everywhere. I enjoy movies, particularly Indie movies, but this author wasn't on my radar until now. What an interesting book about acting and making movies at the same time. The story opened up a whole new world to me. We all see movies, but what do we know about behind the scenes? No, not that rubbish you buy at the supermarket about famous people.

I believe Edward Burns did himself a great service writing this book, especially for folks like me who don't follow stars of any kind. I remember faces and know his from the cover but couldn't tell you a thing about what he has done before I read this book. Mr. Burns is the kind of passionate person that makes things happen and follows through on his beliefs. On so many levels, the book is fascinating and revealing. Burns sticks to his principles. This is the story of his career so far, and what a career it is. The book is loaded with tidbits about all kinds of famous folks and companies and recent film history. Sound dry? Well, it's not at all.

When I started this book, I wasn't sure what to think, but before long, it drew me in kept drawing me back to read. To the publisher's credit, this uncorrected proof has almost no errors. The few I noted were punctuation or so minor as to be passed over seamlessly.

I have a new appreciation for the Indie movies I love so much, knowing a little about how they are made, and the costs and hoops to jump through. Thank goodness for people like Edward Burns.

I received this book from Goodreads giveaways. ( )
  Rascalstar | Jan 21, 2017 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
In Independent Ed, Edward Burns relates his experiences working in the film industry as a writer, director, and actor. Burns directed and produced his first film, The Brothers McMullen, on a tiny $25,000 budget — which went on to win the Grand Jury Prize at the Sundance Film Festival in 1995. Since that initial success, he has gone on to make ten more films on his own terms and act in several big budget Hollywood movies (such as Saving Private Ryan) and television shows.

This memoir highlights Burns’ successes, but perhaps more importantly delves into his mistakes, the poor decisions and bad luck that makes a movie fail to be the success one hoped it would be. These missteps, more than the successes, are where the greatest lessons lie.It’s hard to figure out why something succeeds, much easier to point to the number of reasons why something didn’t. His honesty in looking back on these moments, in which he examines where he went wrong and where the cards were against him, is a part of what makes this memoir work.

A few practical, useful pieces of advice are littered throughout the book (the difference between a master shot and a two shot, for example), providing some help in the nitty gritty of making a movie — but the real value of this book is in his philosophy toward filmmaking in general.

For Burns, the act of independent filmmaking is the ability to make movies according to your own vision and away from influences that might compromise that vision. He describes the twelve best days of his life as the twelve days he spent filming his first movie, The Brothers McMullen — twelve days telling a story true and making a movie for no other reason than the sheer joy of making a movie.

Read the rest of the review on my blog. ( )
  andreablythe | Dec 16, 2016 |
It was a good book I enjoyed it not really my type of reading but I enjoyed it
  luckycharm6139 | Sep 8, 2015 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
I truly enjoyed this glimpse inside the career and life of Ed Burns. I knew Burns primarily as an actor and was awed by his performance in Saving Private Ryan, but hadn't realized that he had directed several of the films he starred in or that his early career was shaped by his luck and tenacity in navigating the film industry. I loved to hear about his early days slogging around lights for Entertainment Tonight and then about his successful career as an artist. This book has valuable advice for anyone eager to break into the film industry, or anyone with big dreams and a sense of wonder at the sometimes crooked paths we trek to reach our fulfillment. ( )
  mjreynolds32 | May 7, 2015 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
Passion for film making is what this book is all about. If you are starting out in ANY endevour your passion will determine whether you succeed or fail.Edward Burns had early success followed by some failures but he stayed true to his craft to succeed. This book describes his career the success and failure in this very candid book. ( )
  foof2you | Apr 5, 2015 |
Showing 1-5 of 14 (next | show all)
I received my copy of Independent Ed through Early Reviewers.

If you want to make movies this book is for you. Independent Ed tells a story, his story, on making and producing films. He tells you his ups and downs of doing independent films and it's entertaining and inspiring. I'm a fan of Ed Burns so I enjoyed the read.
added by ShellyGerard | editEarly Reviewers
 
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A "memoir by one of the most prominent practitioners and evangelists of independent filmmaking, and the ... writer, director, and actor (Saving Private Ryan, Friends with Kids, Entourage) whose first film--The Brothers McMullen--has become an indie classic"--Amazon.com.… (more)

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