The Conversation Series brings together some of the brightest talents in film, television, and storytelling, giving celebrated artists the space and freedom to examine their work in depth.



David venghaus

Friday, Nov 9th - 10:30 am - Room H

David Venghaus has worked in the film and television industry for over 30 years, beginning his career as a Set Production Assistant on NBC’s THE COSBY SHOW and then working his way up to Assistant Director and Associate Producer on such films as FORREST GUMP, PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN, DEAD MAN’S CHEST, PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN, AT WORLD’S END, A CHRISTMAS CAROL and most recently on HORSE SOLDIERS, THE DARK TOWER, THE JUNGLE BOOK, ZOOLANDER 2, MOTHER’S DAY, THE SECRET LIFE OF WALTER MITTY, Disney’s THE LION KING and JUNGLE CRUISE and currently on MOUSE GUARD for Fox Studios.

Venghaus has built his career as an Assistant Director working for some of the most established directors in the world including, Steven Spielberg, Robert Zemeckis, Jon Favreau, Oliver Stone,  Gore Verbinski and Garry Marshall. His work on the motion capture films, A CHRISTMAS CAROL and MARS NEEDS MOMS, JUNGLE CRUISE and the virtual productions of THE JUNGLE BOOK, THE LION KING and MOUSE GUARD put him in a unique position in working in some of the newest technology used in filmmaking today. This work has offered David opportunities to not only build a strong reputation among “A” list filmmakers, but to take that knowledge into the Directing chair himself.

Dave Venghaus has directed the short films, BETWEEN THE SAND AND THE SKY and REMEMBER and feature films, THEY CALL HIM SASQUATCH and most recently HORROR FILMED, THE POE EXPERIMENT. 


Becky Curran: Diversity and Disabilities in Hollywood

Friday, Nov 9th - 11:45 am - Room H

Becky received her Bachelor of Science in Marketing from Providence College, where she gained a passion for influencing change behind the scenes in the entertainment industry. Upon graduation and after 100 job interviews, Becky started working in the Entertainment Marketing department, followed by the Comedy Touring department, at CAA. Becky received her Bachelor of Science in Marketing from Providence College, where she gained a passion for influencing change behind the scenes in the entertainment industry. Upon graduation and after 100 job interviews, Becky started working in the Entertainment Marketing department, followed by the Comedy Touring department, at CAA, the world’s leading entertainment and sports agency. Five years later, she worked at CBS Television Studios, where she assisted with the casting of pilots and television series. During this transition, she also served as the Marketing Director and Co-Founding Board Member of the Catalina Film Festival. She also founded DisABILITY In Media, which focuses on positive disability inclusion storytelling through social media.

More recently, she spent three and a half years working in the Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) & Diversity department at Screen Actors Guild-American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (SAG-AFTRA), the world’s largest entertainment union. At SAG-AFTRA, she supported the implementation of a national diversity plan of action to achieve accurate representation of those groups historically excluded from the entertainment and news media.

Becky was born with achondroplasia, the most common type of short-limbed dwarfism. She stands 4 feet tall. Both of her parents and older sister are “average” height. Her parents always taught her to keep a positive outlook, no matter how harsh the outside world may be. She grew up participating in sports such as sailing, skiing, soccer, and swimming, amongst her "average" height peers. When people ask her about whether or not she likes being a little person, she always has the same answer. "I never want to change but I want the way the outside world reacts to my difference to change."

As a motivational speaker and advocate for inclusion everywhere, Becky strives to teach acceptance while educating and motivating all people to establish goals and work hard to accomplish them. She's ready to come share her story, enlighten and motivate your organization



Adam Krentzman

Friday, Nov 9th - 3:00 pm - Room H

Adam Krentzman is one of the most well-respected executives in the motion picture business. For 25 years he has been involved with packaging, producing, and arranging the financing on over 50 feature films.

As a longtime agent at CAA, Mr. Krentzman knows the entertainment industry landscape. For 20-years Mr. Krentzman served as a motion picture agent representing Hollywood’s top directors, producers, and writers. His clients included: Michael Bay, Francis Ford Coppola, Michael Mann, Antoine Fuqua, Jerry Bruckheimer, Sundance Films, and National Geographic. He has participated in transactions ranging from traditional talent employment and production arrangements to the territorial sales of motion picture distribution rights worldwide, as well as the structuring of international co-productions.

Mr. Krentzman had lived in Beijing on and off for 4 years while consulting for the film financing company, Dragonvision Media on their feature film and film school activities. He was also the Chief Operating Officer of Hollywood Gang - producers of The Departed, 300, The Immortals and Se7en. Mr. Krentzman’s current consulting firm works with CreativeFuture and Fortium Technologies on behalf of all of Hollywood’s anti-piracy efforts. He produced the feature film The Domestics for MGM which was released in July.

Mr. Krentzman has taught and or lectured both graduate and undergraduate courses on Hollywood business practices and film financing at various universities including: Beijing Film Academy, USC, UCLA, Loyola Marymount, University of Hawaii, University of Arizona, American Film Institute, Academy of Art University, National Film School of Florence, Boston University, Chapman and Columbia College.

He is on the board of Mavrick Artists Agency, member of the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences (AMPAS), Society of Motion Picture & Television Engineers (SMPTE), Hollywood Professional Association (HPA), past 18-year member on the Board of Advisors of the Telluride Film Festival.


Ryan Turek

Friday, Nov 9th - 4:15 pm - Room H

Ryan Turek is the VP of feature film development at Blumhouse Productions and co-producer of Halloween (2018), Unfriended: Dark Web, Truth or Dare and Happy Death Day. He is a former journalist who ran the horror website and penned articles for Fangoria and Rue Morgue magazines. You can hear him discuss the horror genre weekly on the podcast Shock Waves with his co-hosts Rebekah McKendry, Robert Galluzzo and Elric Kane.


Annah Feinberg

Saturday, Nov 10th - 11:00 am - Room H

Annah Feinberg is a writer and doodler in Los Angeles, currently developing an adult animated show for Showtime. Her cartoon alter-egos exist @memyselvesand and her cartoon alter-alter-egos exist @shapelies. She wrote and directed short film "Gretch and Tim" and the musical web series "Balloon Room", and her humor writing has been featured in The New Yorker, McSweeney's and The Hairpin. Annah has served as script coordinator on I Love Dick, writers assistant on Arrested Development, Flaked, and Damien, and assisted Julia Louis-Dreyfus on Veep. Her plays, which include The Beautiful Beautiful Sea Next Door, Numismatics, and The Ivories, have been developed and produced by Ars Nova, Naked Angels, EBE Ensemble, The Blank, and Clubbed Thumb and she has served in artistic and literary capacities for New York and Chicago theater companies The Civilians, LCT3, MTC, Steppenwolf, Northlight, TimeLine  and 13P. Annah has an MFA in Dramaturgy from Columbia University and a BFA in Theater Studies from the University of Illinois. She is a founding member of LA-based playwright collective The Kilroys. All of her doppelgängers are cartoon characters, not people.


Michael Shawver - headshot.jpg

Michael P. Shawver

Saturday, Nov 10th - 1:45 Pm - Room H

Originally from Rhode Island, Michael Shawver developed an early working relationship with director Ryan Coogler during their time together at the University of Southern California School of Cinematic Arts. Shawver initially edited Coogler’s short film, Fig, and later went on to cut his feature debut, Fruitvale Station, which premiered at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival. The film garnered two of Sundance’s top prizes, the Audience Award and the Grand Jury Prize, and went onto receive numerous awards and nominations at film festivals worldwide. Shawver also edited All Summers End, a debut feature film by director Kyle Wilamowski, Warren, by director Alex Beh, Tell for director J.M.R. Luna and Fourth Man Out for Andrew Nackman. Shawver’s next collaboration with Ryan Coogler was the highly regarded film Creed, garnering him a nomination for Best Editing in the Independent Critics Poll.

Shawver recently wrapped on the highly praised Black Panther, his third successful collaboration with Coogler and a box office smash, which earned him a Saturn Award Nomination for Best Editing.