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Sterling VanWagenen Papers

Identifier: SWWC-015

Scope and Contents

Five folders of works, financial papers, photographs, promotional kits, and clippings, 1984-1986 contain materials from the 1985 film "The Trip to Bountiful." The collection highlights the filming of the movie and includes the screenplay and stage-play (both signed by writer Horton Foote), a copy of the budget, the main titles, photographs taken during the filming, press kits, a long press book giving background on the film, and clippings pertaining to the movie.


  • 1984-1985, undated


Conditions Governing Access

Collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

Materials from the Wittliff Collections are made available for use in research, teaching, and private study. The user assumes responsibility for determining copyright status, obtaining permission to publish, and abiding by U.S. copyright laws.

Biographical or Historical Information

Sterling VanWagenen produced “The Trip to Bountiful” with screenwriter Horton Foote. VanWagenen was a co-founder of the United States Film Festival and the Sundance Institute, and served as the executive director of the latter organization for five years. He is also known as a director of stage and screen, and he has produced both films and documentaries. He currently heads the Leucadia Film Corporation in Salt Lake City, Utah.

“The Trip to Bountiful” was first written in 1953 by Horton Foote for the "Philco/Goodyear Television Playhouse," and starred Lillian Gish. A longer version opened eight months later on Broadway to critical acclaim. Thirty years later, Peter Masterson, an award-winning actor and director, approached his cousin Horton Foote about making “The Trip to Bountiful” into a movie. Masterson then contacted VanWagenen, who agreed to produce the film. Filming began in the summer of 1985 on location in Texas, and was completed in five weeks. The film starred Geraldine Page (in an Oscar-winning performance), John Heard, Carlyn Glynn, Richard Bradford, and Rebecca De Mornay.


1 boxes

.5 Linear Feet

Language of Materials


Metadata Rights Declarations

  • The descriptive data created for this finding aid is licensed under the CC0 Creative Commons license and is free for use without restriction.


Five folders of works, financial papers, photographs, promotional kits, and clippings, 1984-1986 contain materials from the 1985 film "The Trip to Bountiful."

Physical Location

Materials may be stored off-site. Advance notice is required for use:

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Gift of Sterling VanWagenen, 1987.

Guide to the Sterling VanWagenen Papers
Jennifer B. Patterson
June 1994
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English.

Revision Statements

  • 2005: Finding aid revised by Brandy Harris as part of the Wittliff's Collection Numbering Project
  • 2021: Revised for ArchivesSpace by Susannah Broyles.

Repository Details

Part of the The Wittliff Collections Repository

601 University Drive
San Marcos Texas 78666 USA