Reel Talk

This year, we’re introducing the Blending Lab, a series of live panels in which NVFF’s core components — film, food, and wine — converge into one. We’re thrilled to welcome a host of guests from each of these industries to share their experiences and insights with our audience.

The Blending Lab panels take place at our St. Helena Festival Hub at Farmstead at Long Meadow Ranch and are available to all Festival Pass and Pass Plus holders, and all Patron Circle members.


Friday, November 15


What’s My Wine? | 12:00 PM

Visiting actors from our juried competition films will participate in one of the most unique tasting events of all time. Watch as some of the cast members from your favorite NVFF selections take part in an educational, informative, and entertaining tasting session with some of Napa Valley’s notable sommeliers and learn how to identify characteristics of a variety of unidentified wines.


Featured panelists:

Aaron Abrams, Actor, Nose to Tail

Vanessa Conlin, Vice President, Wine Access

Amanda McCrossin, Wine Director, PRESS Napa Valley

Avi Nash, Actor, Hosea

Josh Pence, Actor, Hosea

Stephanie Turner, Actress // Writer // Producer, Justine


Dissecting the First Draft with ISA | 2:00 PM

The International Screenwriters’ Association’s Jess Hinds hosts a retrospective glance at how one particular script has been transported to the screen. Jess will highlight a specific project, which will be accompanied by an NVFF industry guest.


Featured panelist:

Lucy Alibar, Screenwriter, Troop Zero


Saturday, November 16


Women in Film on Women in Wine | 12:00 PM

Female filmmakers and female winemakers sit down to discuss the similarities between their processes, their industries, and their histories. While there are striking parallels between the productions behind taking a script to the screen and a grape into the bottle, an equally fascinating discussion comes into play when contemplating the various obstacles and tribulations that women have faced over the years in both the film and wine worlds.


Featured panelists:

Bronwyn Cornelius, Producer, Clemency

Mari Wells Coyle, Director of Wine, ONEHOPE Wine

Nina Dobrev, Actress // Producer, Run This Town

Ashley Heisey, VP of Winemaking, Long Meadow Ranch

Nadine Nettmann, Certified Sommelier, SOMM TV

Lisa Whalen, CEO, Spectrevision


Deconstructed: Culinary Cinema | 2:00 PM

Nadine Nettmann, Certified Sommelier and Editorial Director of SOMM TV leads an expansive conversation on cinematic food culture and the future of films and television series within the culinary world. NVFF Culinary Cinema directors will accompany Nadine on stage for this lively and fascinating discussion of food and wine in film.


Featured panelists:

Abigail Ainsworth, Director, Stage: The Culinary Internship

Andrew Ackerman, Director, The Bus Boy

Elizabeth Carroll, Director, Nothing Fancy: Diana Kennedy

Beth Elise Hawk, Director, Breaking Bread

Michael Lei, Director, A Taste of Sky

Remington Long, Director, Alchemy

Nadine Nettmann, Certified Sommelier, SOMM TV

Gab Taraboulsy, Director, Funke


Sunday, November 17


Screenwriting 101 with ISA | 12:00 PM

Max Timm and Felicity Wren of the International Screenwriters’ Association sit down with visiting NVFF filmmakers and screenwriters to discuss the writing process, how to advance your screenwriting career, getting your script produced, and much more.

Li Dong, Director // Writer // Producer, Stealing School

Liz Manashil, Director // Writer, Speed of Life

Sasie Sealy, Director // Writer, Lucky Grandma


Shot for Shot | 2:00 PM

Local distillers present handcrafted cocktails fashioned after poetic moments on film. Join us for an afternoon spent discussing the parallels of each craft and the ways in which one artistic medium can lend itself to an entirely new experience of another.


Featured panelists:

Alanna Hanson, Marketing Director, Hanson Vodka

Scott Hanson, President, Hanson Vodka

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