Alex Rivera was born in 1973 to natives of Peru and New Jersey. He studied cinema and political science at Hampshire College, receiving his BA in 1995. Rivera’s Papapapá (1995) won a silver award at the New York Expo of Short Film and Video, and his 1997 short Why Cybraceros? screened at the Telluride Film Festival. A 1998 Rockefeller Media Fellow, Rivera developed Sleep Dealer, his first feature, at the 2000 Sundance Institute Screenwriters Lab and the 2001 Directors Lab.