After 25 years of programming the Sundance Film Festival, Trevor Groth is exiting to join upstart indie studio 30WEST next month, the company announced Monday.
Groth first joined the programming staff of the Sundance Film Festival in 1993. He was named Senior Programmer in 2003 and Director of Programming in 2009. While at Sundance, Groth has helped champion acclaimed titles such as Whiplash, Fruitvale Station, Hard Eight, Pi, Memento and Napoleon Dynamite. Under his direction as head programmer for the festival’s short film section, Groth was among the first to showcase the work of now prominent filmmakers such as Spike Jonze, Cary Fukunaga, Taika Waititi and Sarah Polley.
“It’s been a wild and exhilarating ride being in the driver’s seat of a festival that has launched many of our generation’s greatest independent films and filmmakers. I look forward to continuing that dynamic journey with a company equally committed to discovering what’s next,” said Groth.
“For over twenty years Trevor has been one of the film community’s most consistent champions of original creative voices, all while exhibiting a fearless commitment to pushing the boundaries of film creation and distribution. We could not be more thrilled that he has chosen to join us,” read a statement released by 30WEST.
Groth worked for the Sundance Institute’s filmmaker labs and development program while still a student in film school at the University of Utah. Since 2002, Groth has also served as Artistic Director for The CineVegas Film Festival, and been a guest curator for the Australian Film Institute, as well as a juror at festivals including Cannes Critics’ Week, SXSW, Morelia and more. He has also served as a consultant on a number of film productions and was instrumental in the creation of Sundance Film Festival London, Sundance Film Festival Hong Kong and Sundance NEXT Fest.
Last week at Sundance, 30WEST purchased the rising film studio NEON, which is already working with the company on the release of I, Tonya. 30WEST also partnered with Bleecker Street to buy the U.S. rights to Wash Westmoreland’s Colette starring Keira Knightley, and arranged the partnership between NEON and AGBO Films to buy Sam Levinson’s satirical genre flick Assassination Nation.
30WEST is currently in production on Karyn Kusama’s Destroyer starring Nicole Kidman, and Peter Hedges’ Ben Is Back starring Julia Roberts and Lucas Hedges. This spring, 30WEST is teaming up with Roadside Attractions to release the film Beast, which premiered to acclaim at the Toronto International Film Festival and most recently enjoyed its U.S. premiere at Sundance.
Jeff Sneider | Editor in Chief