If you love film or wine, or if you’re like me and you can’t get enough of both, you won’t want to miss this exclusive event to be held at the city’s first winery, City Winery Chicago. Esteemed filmmaker Ed Burns will be present to showcase clips from four of his films while winery founder Michael Dorf highlights the wine pairings and leads a Q&A with Burns. A total of 8 wines will be perfectly paired with 8 scenes from 4 films, including The Brothers McMullen, She’s the One, Sidewalks of New York, and just in time for the holidays, the yet to be theatrically released The Fitzgerald Family Christmas.
Whether you’re an indie film fanatic or a mainstream moviegoer, you’re probably familiar with the works of Ed Burns. An accomplished actor, writer, director, and producer, Burns has spent time on TV in shows like Will & Grace or as himself in Entourage, but is better known for his presence on the big screen in films such as 27 Dresses, 15 Minutes, Saving Private Ryan, and this year’s recent hits Alex Cross and Man on a Ledge. He’s also starred in movies he’s written and directed, the likes of The Brothers McMullen, which became a festival breakout hit and set the stage for his future films She’s the One, Sidewalks of New York, and recently lauded low-budget successes Nice Guy Johnny and Newlyweds.
Although quite frankly, to say “low-budget success” is really the understatement of the century. Burns has made a name for himself in the independent film world by producing movies not for the low price tag of $100,000, but rather 1/10th of that. “Impossible”, one might say. But possible it is. Burns has utilized his relationships not only with actors he’s worked with in the past, but local purveyors in his hometown of New York, in order to cut costs wherever possible. It’s even been said that his actors come to set in their own clothes, having done their hair and makeup themselves. Often times, he’s filming a scene somewhere with patrons nearby, perhaps even unnoticed.
This style of filmmaking lends to a very realistic atmosphere on-screen, and this works so well for Burns because his films are always centered on everyday interpersonal and familial themes. The dialogue and situations his characters go through during the course of the film are entirely relevant to the average Joe. Burns rarely has flashy, glitzy possessions and people on-screen. Rather, he shows characters that look like you and me; often blue collar, and always relatable.
In addition, Ed Burns has embraced the evolution of film distribution in the digital era and has seen success in doing so. Whereas “straight to video” previously held a stigma of low-quality filmmaking and/or acting, Burns has led the way for other filmmakers by leveraging on-demand and online trends to provide quality films at the press of a button while in the comfort of your own home…or car…or while airborne for that matter.
This event is a great opportunity to not only enjoy some fabulous wines, but to hear more about Burns’ style of filmmaking, as well as some of his trade secrets and fun facts from the making of these four films (among others perhaps, if you care to ask), all while in the company off fellow cinephiles and vinophiles just like you and me.
IMPORTANT EVENT INFORMATION BELOW:
WHERE: City Winery Chicago: 1200 W Randolph St., Chicago, IL 60607
WHEN: Tuesday December 18th 6:00PM Doors / 8:00pm Start
WHO: Filmmaker Ed Burns in attendance
TICKETS: Approximately 50 tickets remain, and this event will sell out, so advance purchases are recommended. Click here for a floor plan and seat availability.
- VIP $48 Slightly raised landing, non-communal tables for a more intimate setting
- Premier $48 Front and center, communal seating
- Reserved $38 Larger communal and bar stool seating areas in the back, as well as communal seating beside the stage
About City Winery:
City Winery is the brainchild of Michael Dorf, founder of the iconic Knitting Factory, a long running New York music venue, who wanted to create a space in Manhattan where he could combine his shared passions for wine and music. City Winery strives to deliver the highest-end combined culinary and cultural experience to customers who are passionate in sharing wine, music, and culinary arts. Their unique facility combines a fully functioning winery with intimate concerts, food & wine classes, private events, and fine dining. After the success of their flagship New York location, the Chicago location opened this summer.
The Fitzgerald Family Christmas is available nationwide now via VOD, and will have limited theatrical release. In IL, you can catch it at the Wilmette Theatre, where it opens December 21st.
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