Bill Pullman / Actor

Times Staff Writer

Bill PULLMAN has learned a thing or two about acting in a career that’s spanned intriguing indies (the just-released “Bottle Shock”) and summer blockbusters (“Independence Day”), and at the 2008 Palm Springs International ShortFest, he’ll impart some of that wisdom. At 3 p.m. on Aug. 23, Pullman will conduct an acting master class, open to fans and film stars alike. (For information on the class and the short-film festival, which runs Aug. 21-27, go to

Homebody . . . : I travel so much -- I’ve been to eight film festivals this year alone -- so when I do have time off, I’m really a neighborhood guy, which for me is Beachwood Canyon. So if we have guests, I’ll expose them to the beauty of living here. We’ll go to the Hollywood Farmers Market, and then later maybe we’ll order takeout from the neighborhood Chinese restaurant, which is The Inn Place on Bronson. The house special fried rice is really top-shelf.

. . . Yet worldly: For something a little different, I enjoy shopping at Shirak International Market on Hollywood Boulevard. They had an olive bar before everyone else caught up with the idea. I like the Armenian flatbread and fresh produce, and I always get an ice cream sandwich they call Tamara, which is my wife’s name.

A bit of the grape: For good wine, I used to go to Off Vine because they knew their stuff and they had a souffle that killed, but they’ve been closed since the fire, so now I like Osteria Mozza on Melrose. They’re very knowledgeable about wine, and their Italian food tastes like it just came out of your garden.


It takes a village: This isn’t exactly a special-occasion restaurant, but the Village Coffee Shop is great for what is most important, and that’s socializing. We can have a bite to eat and catch up with the neighbors. We have all our meetings there; it’s our version of an Irish pub. And the Beachwood Market is right next door, and that’s where our kids packed groceries for extra money.

Strange and familiar: Once Amoeba Music moved into the area, everybody knew a great thing had happened, and now I love the fact that The Hotel Cafe is in our neighborhood. I’ve had some great, great nights of music there. We have a neighbor from Finland who plays the saw, and her combo played there. That’s what I love about the place -- there’s always somebody doing something distinctive there.