Sterling Van Wagenen

Professor (Lecturer)


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Sterling Van Wagenen has been involved in the independent film movement in the United States for over thirty years. He was born in Provo, Utah and attended college at Brigham Young University, graduating with a B.A. in Philosophy with High Honors.

He was the co-founder of the Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah, and, in association with Robert Redford, he was the founding executive director of the Sundance Institute. While at Sundance he oversaw the development of many important independent films including EL NORTE, DESERT BLOOM, PROMISED LAND, and BELAZAIRE THE CAJUN.

He has directed four feature films, and produced over fourteen documentaries, feature films and/or television series, including the Academy Award winning TRIP TO BOUNTIFUL with Horton Foote.

From 1993 to 1999, Mr. Van Wagenen was Adjunct Professor of Film at Brigham Young University, and manager of the University’s TV Group. From 1999 to 2004, he served, first, as chair of the Film Department, then as Director of the School of Film and Digital Media at the University of Central Florida.

He has served on the media arts panels at both the National Endowment for the Humanities and the National Endowment for the Arts, twice chairing the Arts and Television Panel at the NEA.

He has been a guest lecturer in film at Columbia University, Franklin College, Eckerd College, Utah Valley University and the University of Florida.

Currently, he is a partner in Pearl Farm Entertainment, based in Los Angeles.

He is married to Marilee Jeppson.