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Indie Filmmakers Shop Small: Edward Burns

The quintessential independent film director—and die-hard New Yorker—shares his tips for shopping small this Small Business Saturday.



Tribeca is working with American Express this holiday season to help small businesses throughout the country. You’ve probably heard of Black Friday and, more recently, Cyber Monday. Small Business Saturday is a promotion designed to support the small businesses that fuel our economy and invigorate communities.


So, leading up to Saturday, November 26, we will be shining a little extra light on the moms-and-pops whose local, independently-owned businesses deserve the attention of holiday shoppers on the Saturday after Thanksgiving and beyond.


In a way, small business is akin to independent filmmaking. With that in mind, we’ve asked some of our Tribeca Film independent directors, producers and actors to share with us their favorite ways to “shop small.” Over the next week or two, we’ll share their recommendations and inside scoop. Happy holidays!


Next up: Edward Burns, one of the most dedicated indie film directors we know. (After its TFF 2011 premiere, Ed's latest film, Newlyweds, will be released via Tribeca Film on December 26.) As a bonus, Tribeca Film Festival Executive Director Nancy Schafer chimes in as well.



Edward Burns


Could you share a few of your favorite local businesses with us?


There's a really great private gym in TriBeCa called The Live Well Company (at Church and Franklin). The owners are Darryl (trainer) and Anne Marie (nutritionist), who are not only an incredibly well informed/educated pair, their personal attention is second to none. It's a great environment to work out privately under their close watch.



Restaurants: There are a few great places in/around NYC. Caffe Linda and Barbarini are two wonderful restaurants that I love, which are both in very different parts of town. For great midtown fare (on 49th Street between Lex & 3rd) is Caffe Linda, and if you're feeling like a trip to the Seaport, definitely pay a visit to Barbarini on Front Street. You won't be sorry.




And of course, if you're down in TriBeCa, there's Estancia on Greenwich Street. Estancia is a long standing establishment that's a bit of secret in the neighborhood. For coffee and meetings, you can't beat Pecan, located just in front of the 1 train—the heart of TriBeCa. And in the evenings, if you're looking for some great food and want to catch some live music, definitely look into who's playing at City Winery. You can enjoy some great local wine, which is always a good thing.


Pecan City Winery


Have you come across any great local places in your travels? Are there any places you have to go to anytime you are in a particular city, etc?


If you happen to be in Florence, make a reservation at Trattoria del Garga. I cannot recommend this place more. For the best ribs in Ohio, I found Fahrenheit in Cleveland while I was working there this past summer. Joni's in Montauk is the best place for a post-beach sandwich, and if you're out on the Island, Round Swamp Farm in the Springs bakes the most incredible pies. And if I'm in NYC and headed to a friend's for dinner, I'll stop by Hudson Wine Merchants and pick up a bottle of Ilegal Mezcal. 


Hudson Wine Merchants


Especially when it comes to the creative process, we're all creatures of habit. Do you have any traditions or rituals around local businesses you can share with us?


To be perfectly honest, I have no rituals. Each day is so different from the next, which I think actually helps my creative process.


Where will you do your holiday shopping this year?


I love to head back home to the Green Acres Mall in Valley Stream, Long Island.


Green Acres Mall


Running a small business isn't totally unlike shooting an indie film. What are the best characteristics one could have for making either successful?


There's no doubt that running a small business is very much like making an indie film — both require hard work, integrity, and passion for what you're doing. It's important to understand your customers/audience and make a concerted effort to produce a quality product.


If the filmmaking thing hadn't panned out, what business would you open?


For me, there was no other option.




Nancy Schafer

Executive Director, Tribeca Film Festival


Locanda Verde


Could you share a few of your favorite local businesses with us? (restaurants, boutiques, bars, coffee shops)


I’m a regular at lots of places in Tribeca and Chelsea. I have my favorite delis and movie theaters, but some notable places are Walker's and Locande Verde in Tribeca, and Les Toiles du Soleil, Three Tarts and La Bergamote in Chelsea.


Three Tarts


Have you come across any great local places in your travels? Are there any places you have to go to anytime you are in a particular city, etc?


I have my places I love to shop in LA, whether or not I feel like I can afford them!


Les Toiles Du Soleil


Where will you do your holiday shopping this year?


Yikes! I have no idea!! Sometimes it all comes down to what’s available online...


La Bergamote


If the filmmaking thing hadn't panned out, what business would you open?


I always wanted to open a cinema with upscale food and beverages.



Where will you shop small this Small Business Saturday? Learn more!


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