Wampler’s Ascent Wampler’s Ascent documents Steve Wampler as he attempts to become the first person with a disability to climb the biggest rock face in the world, El Captain in Yosemite National Park. 20,000 pull-ups, 5 nights and 6 days on the sheer face of a mountain with only the use of one limb, this is a story of a man’s commitment to bringing international attention to the funding of a camp for kids with severe disabilities. Wampler’s Ascent started out as an adventure movie to bring awareness and funding to a summer camp for kids with disabilities. While that mission was fulfilled, the finished documentary actually takes the viewer deep into a remarkable love story that awakens the potential in all of us. www.wamplerfoundation.org
Afflicted by Cerebral Palsy due to complications at birth, August 22, 1968, Stephen J. Wampler was born to Dr. Joseph and Gayle Wampler and is the oldest of 5 children. Steve graduated from the University of California at Davis with a degree in Environmental Engineering. Steve and Elizabeth met in Coronado, California. They fell in love and were married and are the parents of two children, Charlotte and Joseph. Steve’s favorite quote is from the US Navy Seals, “Failure is not an option.”
Steve’s commitment to children with disabilities and his love of the great outdoors were inspired by the experiences and life lessons he gained from ages 9 to 19 while attending summer camp. In 2002, he and Elizabeth created the Wampler Foundation with the mission of providing a one-of-a-kind wilderness experience to physically disabled children nationwide. The Wampler Foundation believes that nature teaches everyone that challenges can be overcome if we look beyond our own physical limitationsin life.
As a demonstration of the foundation, Wampler’s Ascent is an opportunity to bring international awareness in sending children with disabilities to the same summer camp he attended when he was an adolescent, Steve climbed El Capitan in Yosemite National Park. The Wampler’s documented his heroic climb and “Wampler’s Ascent” has received national and international acclaim with 54 laurel leafs and 2036 film festival awards to date. Friends in Hollywood (old and new) lined up to provide video testimonials in support of Steve’s goal (including: Ellen DeGeneres, Paul Reiser, Will Forte, Will Ferrell, Jay Leno and Chris Isaak).
The Wamplers chose to take advantage of current technology by distributing Wampler’s Ascent on the new digital frontier. Their latest mountain to climb is bringing this film directly to public awareness by using a different campaign that Hollywood will soon follow. The film has be made available for purchase/download on Vimeo.com where proceeds will fund Camp Wamp, sponsoring disabled children to attend summer camp and spawning the opportunity to follow the Wampler’s as they build and expand to their own facility. Just like any good action movie or love story… do you hear “sequel?”
Elizabeth and Steve met in the city of Coronado, California at a party. She has been quoted (when she first saw Steve), “When we first met I thought to myself ‘I bet he is having a really hard life… and then I saw how happy he was.” That was when she fell in love and that was the beginning of their lives together. After producing a marriage and family with two children, Charlotte and Joseph, Elizabeth and Steve co-founded the Wampler Foundation in 2002. Having never directed a film before, she knew she was the only one who could truly bring this love story to the screen for the world to see. Elizabeth is currently active in the Coronado community and with the local schoolsystem.
Born in Chicago, Harry spent most of his life in music. While living in the Midwest, he worked as an arranger and performer. He also earned a Bachelor of Music degree from DePaul University and a Master of Arts degree from Western Illinois University, where he subsequently taught theory, orchestration, and conducting. Harry moved to New York to pursue his doctorate at Columbia University. Upon completion of his doctoral courses, the opportunity arose for him to further his longtime dream of a career in film music. The years of classical training and the twenty years in the popular music scene (he plays great sax) combined with a good sense of drama to make him a natural in film music. Harry has scored over one hundred films. His major feature credits include the highly successful FRIDAY THE 13TH series for Paramount Pictures, and now New Line Cinema. SWAMP THING for UA/Embassy, HOUSE, A breakaway hit for New World Pictures, and DEEP STAR SIX and ACES-IRON EAGLE III for Carolco Pictures. These films characterize his style as an action, suspense, and thriller composer but Harry’s credits also include SPRING BREAK, a good-time rock and roll summertime success for Columbia Pictures and MY BOYFRIEND’S BACK, a teen comedy for Touchstone Pictures.
Title: Wampler’s Ascent
Types and Forms: Theatrical, Documentary, Feature
Genres: Adventure, Drama, Family
Producer: Stephen J. Wampler
Director: Elizabeth Wampler
Format: Color, HD Digital, NTSC Region 0, Stereo Dolby A
Rights Status: Copyrights under the Stephen J. Wampler Foundation Inc.
Distribution: Hollywood Locations
Cinematographer: Corey Rich
Editor: Jacques Spitzer
Cast: Steve, Elizabeth, Charlotte and Joseph Wampler, Tommy Thompson, Dave Lane, Tom Evans, Todd Offenbacher, Chris LaScola, Ben Mullin, Dean Potter, Chris MacNamara, Steve Snider, Lori Hom, Jim Nejedly, Jenny Yarrow, Seth Jones, John Downey
Music: Harry Manfredini
Length: 76 minutes
Special thanks to…
ESET (www.eset.com) and everybody who encouraged and believed in Steve’s quest.
The Stephen J. Wampler Foundation’s mission is to make adventure programs accessible to all children, regardless of their background or ability. To provide outdoor adventure and environmental programs that foster their social and emotional growth, physical rehabilitation and environmental awareness for children with physical disabilities.