By Caryn James | James on Screens December 21, 2011 at 10:25PM
Edward Burns’ latest film, Newlyweds, is a delightfully witty, sharply observed romance that comes with its own amazing origin story. Although you wouldn’t guess it from the film’s clear, bright look, it was shot for a pittance -- around $9,000, yes that’s thousand – in recognizable locations around Tribeca (that's the Franklin St. subway stop in the background of the photo above). Shoestring budgets don’t get stringier.
But the small scale suits the up-to-the-minute story based on a premise almost anyone can relate to: you don’t just marry a person, you marry the whole family. Buzzy and Katie, played by Burns and Caitlin FitzGerald, are the couple whose solid new marriage – the second for both, so they’ve learned some things -- is thrown off track by their relatives. Buzzy’s chaotic, self-absorbed younger sister becomes their uninvited house guest, Katie’s sister and brother-in-law can’t stop meddling, and even Katie’s ex becomes part of the tangle.
As he showed with his underrated romance Purple Violets, which was released on iTunes, Burns is a savvy pioneer of alternate distribution. Newlyweds, which was the closing night film of the Tribeca Film Festival, will be available on VOD on Dec 26th, on iTunes on the 30th, and in limited theatrical release in January. But those details don’t overwhelm the film’s charm. Maybe anyone can make a film for thousands today, but not everyone can do it with Burns’ expert eye and ear for the tell-tale details of relationships.
In our video chat, Burns and FitzGerald discuss the process of getting the film made, whether it is optimistic about marriage, and what Burns’ Twitter followers contributed to Newlyweds and to his 2010 film Nice Guy Johnny.
And if you missed my live on-line chat with Ed about the film on Jan. 3, you can watch it here.
Video edited by TAYLOR LEVY.