Tracy Droz Tragos


Los Angles, California, United States

At an early age, Tracy found solace in watching Vietnam War movies and making a connection with the father she never knew, a U.S. Navy officer who died in Vietnam. Over time, this led to her interest in storytelling - especially stories revealing hard truths. 

Tracy’s work includes Abortion: Stories Women Tell, the HBO documentary telling intimate stories of unplanned pregnancies and resilience; Smartest Kids in the World, a documentary about the crisis in U.S. high school education; and Be Good, Smile Pretty, an Emmy Award-winning documentary about the grief and healing of those orphaned by the Vietnam War. 

With Rich Hill, Tracy embedded in the homes of low-income families in rural Missouri to give voice to the at-risk teenagers there. Rich Hill won the Grand Jury Prize for U.S. Documentary at the 2014 Sundance Film Festival. Since then, Tracy has continued filming with these Missouri families with a focus on Sarah, whom Tracy met in 2012, an ambitious student who became pregnant at age 15 and is now a mother of three. In 2020, Tracy was awarded a Guggenheim fellowship for her ongoing work on Sarah. 

Tracy holds an M.F.A. in Screenwriting from USC and a B.A. in Writing in Fiction from Northwestern University. As an aspiring fiction writer/director, she faced many rejections - but with documentaries, she was able to greenlight herself. In 2019, she met Sula, the real-life inspiration behind "The Macrobiotic Stoner," and she is excited to return to the fiction world with this feature, currently in development. Tracy is a 2021 Sundance Screenwriting and Directing Fellow, a 2021 Susan Nimoy Fellow and Lynn Auerbach Fellow and a 2022 Adrienne Shelly Fellow. Tracy is proudly premiering her new documentary, PLAN C, at the 2023 Sundance Film Festival.