Edward Burns: Tenacity wins!

17th Feb 15 | Music & Movies

Edward Burns

Edward Burns credits Sundance Film Festival founder Robert Redford with changing his life forever.

Edward Burns advises aspiring filmmakers to be "passionate and tenacious" about their work.

The 47-year-old actor got his big break in the entertainment industry after his independent film The Brothers McMullen, which he wrote, directed and starred in, picked up the Sundance Grand Jury Prize in 1995.

Edward was working as a production assistant for Entertainment Tonight before he rose to fame and the star thinks success is possible for filmmakers who don't give up on themselves.

"It's a lot more fun on this side than hauling lights for you guys," he joked during an interview with ET Online, his former employers.

"Be passionate about it and be tenacious because that's what is required. If this is what you want to do you're going to figure out a way to do it."

Edward has since starred in more than 30 film and television projects, including hit HBO show Entourage and classic war movie Saving Private Ryan.

His success is quite magical, as Edward recalls what it was like masterminding his move from production assistant to celebrated filmmaker-and-actor in the mid-90s.

"[Sundance Film Festival founder Robert] Redford was doing the junket for Quiz Show," Edward shared. "I, of course, was PAing that junket. I had my VHS copy of Brothers McMullen, a rough cut of the movie and you know I had a 30 second schpeel prepared. So the minute the interview ended, he would go to the elevator with his publicist and I was gonna cut him off and hand him my tape... Fortunately for me, Redford looked at it and you know, we got the call that we were in."

Within a year, The Brothers McMullen picked up the Sundance Grand Jury Prize.

"It was that moment," Edward noted. "My life would never be the same after getting that award."

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