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Hollywood Uncorked


Movie producer Ben Haber, restaurateur Scott Kay & screenwriter Tom Mullen share wine and swap stories with guests from the world of entertainment.


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Movie producer Ben Haber, restaurateur Scott Kay & screenwriter Tom Mullen share wine and swap stories with guests from the world of entertainment.





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Producer & Executive Daniel Schnider & Napa Merlot

Daniel Schnider joins the podcast to discuss his many career hyphens, from serving as a producer on the hit movie Straight Outta Compton to his current position as an executive at Univision. As he and the guys break out three bottles of Napa Merlot, Daniel spins yarns from his diverse career, including how a handy bit of entrepreneurship landed him at the world’s largest Spanish-language programmer and how he ended up as the producing partner for Dr. Dre.


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TV Writer Aury Wallington & Sancerre

Hollywood Uncorked celebrates its 100 episode by welcoming screenwriter Aury Wallington, showrunner of the hit Netflix animated series Spirit Riding Free. Wallington shares tales from the writing trenches on shows like Heroes and Veronica Mars, how she landed her first writing credit on Sex & The City, and how her career started by running off to New Orleans to be a poet. Meanwhile, TV director Kabir Akhtar returns to help Aury, Tom and Ben drink their way through three affordable, but...


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Calvert Studios Owner Bill Reider & Super Tuscan

Calvert Studios has hosted countless Hollywood productions over the past several decades – from The Client List and Melrose Place to the original Beverly Hills: 90210. In this episode, Calvert Studios owner Bill Reider stops by to talk about the economics and challenges of running an active TV/film studio, and the future of production in Los Angeles. Meanwhile, he and guest co-host Ava Jamshidi help Ben & Tom drink through three affordable, yet amazing bottles of Super Tuscan.


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TV Director Kabir Akhtar & Washington State Cabernet

After winning an Emmy for editing the pilot of Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, Kabir Akhtar has gone on to become a prominent TV comedy director, helming shows like Superstore, Young Sheldon and The Sex Lives of College Girls, which he also produces. Kabir stops by Hollywood Uncorked’s first episode since the start of the pandemic to get into three bottles of Washington State Cabernet while discussing the keys to successful TV directing, why he left a career editing reality TV to enter the scripted...


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Screenwriter Richard Smith & Nero d’Avola

Want to remember what life was like pre-COVID? Tune into this episode (recorded in early March) with screenwriter Richard Smith as the Hollywood Uncorked panel engages in forbidden activity like sitting face-to-face, sharing several bottles of Italian Nero d’Avola, and wantonly leaving the house. Along the way they talk about Smith’s screenwriting career, which got off to an auspicious start when his very first film project, Leonard, went from British short to premiering at the Sundance Film...


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Storied Media Group’s Sara Moskowitz & Rioja

In an industry where intellectual property is everything, Sara Moskowitz is sitting on a mountain of it as a VP at Storied Media Group, which represents dozens of top publishers around the world, including The Washington Post. Moskowitz stops by this episode to help taste three bottles of Rioja while discussing Storied Media’s dual role as content broker and producer (Amazon’s Modern Love), how newspapers and magazines are bolstering their bottom lines with TV & film projects, and how her...


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Comedian Zane Lamprey & Ribera del Duero

In the world of drinking-based entertainment, there is one man who reigns as the unquestioned king: Zane Lamprey, whose alcohol-driven travel cable shows Three Sheets and Drinking Made Easy pretty much invented the genre itself. Lamprey joins this truly hilarious episode to help drink through three bottles of Ribera del Duero from Spain as he regales the panel with tales of his favorite filmed drinking adventures from around the world, his new beer podcast Crafts-n-Crafts, and his infamous...


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Screenwriter/Author Adam Jay Epstein & Paso Robles Wines

What’s the best way to backstop a career in the notoriously topsy-turvy world of screenwriting? Adam Jay Epstein (Not Another Teen Movie, Extreme Movie) does it with his “night job” of authoring best-selling fantasy and sci-fi books for the middle grades. While helping the panel drink through three bottles of wine from California’s fast-growing Paso Robles region, Epstein talks about the process and economics of creating book franchises like The Familiars, Starbounders and Snared, his love...


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Manager John Beach & Corner Store Wines

John Beach has made a niche for himself in Hollywood by getting early access to books and connecting them to writers and producers for film and TV adaptation. With guest host Mike Cohen sitting in, Beach spends this episode talking about what he looks for in a book that might be right for the screen and his well-hidden past as a movie poster model for films like Grosse Pointe Blank and White Squall. Meanwhile, the panel dives into three surprisingly delicious (and decidedly random) wines...


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Production Executive Winsor Yuan & Croatian Wines

What’s it like when your boss is a writer, director and producer? Winsor Yuan stops by to describe his day-to-day running the development slate for multi-hyphenate Jared Stern, who has written the likes of Wreck-It Ralph, The Lego Batman Movie and The Internship, and is showrunning Green Eggs & Ham for Netflix. Meanwhile, Tom’s brother Tim Mullen and his wife Cindy sit in and ply the Hollywood Uncorked panel with a collection of stunningly good Plavac wines from Croatia that they picked up...


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Cougar Town Co-Creator Kevin Biegel & Dolcetto

Cougar Town began as a joke between co-creators Bill Lawrence and Kevin Biegel: Could you actually make a show with a name that bad? Well, they did just that—with the resulting show running for six seasons and more than 100 episodes on ABC and TBS. Biegel joins the Hollywood Uncorked panel and the week’s guest host, screenwriter Karen McCullah (Legally Blonde), to talk all things Cougar Town while appropriately helping swig back three bottles of Dolcetto. Along the way, Biegel chats about...


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Producer Matt Gross & Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon

Veteran producer Matt Gross boasts credits across all genres and platforms, from movies like Fired Up and Across the Universe to TV projects like Sons of Liberty, Dirty Sexy Money and Day Break. Fortunately for the Hollywood Uncorked panel, Matt is almost as passionate about wine as he is about entertainment—especially about the wines in this episode, Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa Valley. Joined by guest co-host and producer of the new Creepshow series Brian Witten, Gross talks about his...


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Screenwriter Brian Duffield & Oregon Pinot Noir

Brian Duffield has made a name as one of the most versatile screenwriters in Hollywood—from making waves at age 23 with his first comedy spec Your Bridesmaid Is A Bitch to writing the McG-directed Netflix thriller The Babysitter to co-writing Insurgent, the uber-successful second installment of the Divergent franchise. As he joins the panel and guest co-host Arvind Ethan David to drink through three perfect-for-fall bottles of Oregon Pinot Noir, Brian talks about the emotional rollercoaster...


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Novelist Tommy Wallach & Unique Blends

It wasn’t enough for author Tommy Wallach to simply write the New York Times-bestseller We All Looked Up. He also had to go and record an entire album of original music to go with it. Turns out, music and writing are just two of Wallach’s many talents, which also include devising the popular escape room, Lab Rat, which was recently named the 8th best escape room in the world. In this episode, Hollywood Uncorked honors Wallach with three bottles of blends as unique as he is, while guest...


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Miramax Exec Michael Lachance & Napa Chardonnay

As a veteran exec in the animation divisions at Dreamworks and Sony, Michael Lachance has conceived and developed some of the most iconic animated movies of the past two decades—from helping concept Shrek 2 as his first project out of college to pitching Jeffrey Katzenberg the title and idea for Kung Fu Panda. In this episode, Michael helps the guys taste through three bottles of Napa Valley Chardonnay while discussing his approach to overseeing the new family & animation division of...


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3Pas Studios Executive Carlos Aguirre & Argentinean Malbec

While 3Pas Studios has risen to become a top Hollywood producer of TV and movies oriented toward Latino audiences, VP Carlos Aguirre says its mandate is really no different than any other production company: find amazing material and bring it to the screen. In this episode, Carlos details his journey from journalism to mainstream studios like Paramount and Fox Television—and finally to his current role in the feature division of Eugenio Derbez’s production company. While sampling three truly...


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Film Executive Naia Cucukov & Langhe

As the EVP of Development and Production at Walden Media, Naia Cucukov has touched a string of the company’s family-oriented releases, from A Dog’s Purpose to Steven Spielberg’s The BFG to the surprise 2017 hit Wonder, which went on to gross more than $300 million. In this episode, Naia helps the panel with their continuing exploration of the Nebbiolo-based wines of Italy’s Piedmont area by knocking back three bottles of Langhe. Along the way, she discusses what she looks for when scouring...


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Family Guy Co-Executive Producer Kirker Butler & Barbaresco

Has there ever been a joke so offensive that Fox’s Family Guy didn’t want to touch it? We get the answer to that question and many more as we sit down with one of the show’s longest-tenured writers and its co-executive producer, Kirker Butler. With three bottles of 2015 Barbaresco providing our highest-rated wine night ever, Kirker talks about how he originally caught the attention of Family Guy creator Seth MacFarlane with a sample script for the show, his stint going to The Cleveland Show...


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Screenwriter Tamara Chestna & New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc

Tamara Chestna has traveled that rarest of Hollywood paths: from production executive to working screenwriter. In this episode, she sits down to talk about the unusual journey, the Amy Poehler-directed comedy Moxie she recently had greenlit by Netflix, and why the ongoing battle between agencies and the Writer’s Guild are so awkward (and not fun) for everyone involved. Meanwhile, Chestna’s manager and Episode #59 guest Ava Jamshidi steps in as guest co-host to help the group field test three...


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Screenwriter Adam Pava & 2016 Châteauneuf-du-Pape

When screenwriter Adam Pava (The Boxtrolls, The Lego Movie 4D) landed a gig as the writing assistant for Phil Lord & Chris Miller’s MTV animated series Clone High in the early 2000s, he knew immediately he was in with the right two guys. And while the controversial show was short-lived, Pava’s professional partnership with the prolific writing and directing duo has flourished—helping spawn Pava’s own successful animation writing career. As he joins the Hollywood Uncorked panel in knocking...