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Mariana van Zeller

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Darren Foster

Mariana Zeller

Personal web site

Mariana van Zeller 5 Question With Mariana van Zeller TVNewser

Full Name
Mariana van Zeller

May 7, 1976 (age 44) (

correspondent journalist

TV shows
Vanguard, Pimp City: A Journey to the Center of the Sex Slave Trade

News & Documentary Emmy Award for Outstanding Informational Programming – Long Form

Notable credits
National Geographic Channel, Fusion, Vanguard

Similar People
Adam Yamaguchi, Cristina Costantini, Keith Summa


Mariana van Zeller (born May 7, 1976 in Cascais, Portugal) is a Peabody Award winning Portuguese journalist and correspondent for National Geographic Channel. She is also chief correspondent for Fusion. She is a former correspondent for the Vanguard documentary series on the former Current TV.


Mariana van Zeller Tonight39s MustSee TV Vanguard39s Mariana van Zeller on

Mariana van zeller estoril conferences 2013

How National Geographic Reporter Gets Narcos To Talk On Camera


Mariana van Zeller Mariana van Zeller Fusion

Van Zeller studied international relations at the Universidade Lusíada de Lisboa. When she graduated she spent two years working at SIC, which was at that time the first and largest Portuguese private television network. First, she began working in the travel and international departments of the main networks channel, and later she joined SIC Notícias, which is the networks news channel.

Mariana van Zeller Mariana van Zeller Wikipedia

She applied for a Masters degree to Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism three times: her first application was rejected, and her second was wait-listed. After her third application in 2001, van Zeller flew to New York City and knocked on the dean's door, explaining her dream of becoming a journalist in the United States. The dean was impressed and allowed her to enroll.

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One month after van Zeller moved to New York City, the September 11 attacks took place. She was contacted that morning by a producer from SIC Notícias, where she had previously interned. She was directed to meet a news crew atop the CBS Building in Midtown Manhattan, where she would go live in three hours. Before going on air, she was told: "Prepare yourself. The whole of Portugal is watching you."

After receiving her degree from Columbia, van Zeller moved to London to work for a documentary producer, with hopes of covering the Iraq War. With London as her new base, she studied Arabic at Damascus University in Syria in order to better seek out stories in the Middle East. Over the next two years, her freelance documentaries from Syria appeared on PBS's Frontline/World, the CBC, and Channel 4 (United Kingdom). In 2005, she joined Current TV as a correspondent and producer for the Vanguard documentary series. Van Zeller is fluent in Portuguese, English, Spanish, Italian and French. She also speaks some Arabic.

Personal life

Van Zeller is married to her former Columbia classmate Darren Foster, who is a series producer and director with National Geographic Channel. In July 2010, she gave birth to her first child, a son named Vasco.

She became an American citizen on March 17, 2015.


  • City of God, Guns & Gangs - Documentary about Brazil’s bold new initiative to transform Rio de Janeiro’s slums before the country hosts the 2014 World Cup and 2016 Olympics.
  • Gateway to Heroin - Documentary about how and why OxyContin has fueled a new heroin epidemic in Massachusetts.
  • This (Illegal) American Life - Documentary about people living unlawfully in the United States, exploring the life of a senior UCLA student and a strawberry picker.
  • Narco Bling (2012) Documentary about the spoils of the drug cartels of Sinaloa, Mexico.
  • Missionaries of Hate - A Documentary about the influence of American religious in making homosexuality a crime punishable by death in Uganda.
  • The OxyContin Express - A documentary about prescription drug (opioids) abuse in the United States.
  • Rape on the Reservation - A documentary about the Native American women raped in Indian reserves.
  • Soccer’s Lost Boys - A documentary about the hidden side of football in South Africa during the world cup.
  • America’s Secret War - A documentary about the support of militant groups attacking Iran.
  • Sri Lanka: Notes From a War on Terror - A documentary about the final days of Sri Lanka’s civil war and the Tamil Tigers.
  • Chinatown, Africa - A documentary about China’s rapidly growing presence in Africa.
  • Rebels in the Pipeline - A documentary about the oil conflicts in Nigeria.
  • Obama’s Army - A documentary about Obama Campaign team, workers and young volunteers.
  • Lagos la Vida Loca - A documentary about the rapid growth of the city of Lagos.
  • Elixir of the Toxic Frog - A documentary about the deforestation of the Amazon and the destruction of the bio diversity.
  • El Chapo: CEO of Crime - A documentary on one of the world's most powerful drug lords.
  • Pimp City: A Journey To The Center of The Sex Slave Trade.
  • See the complete list of Mariana Van Zeller documentaries in Vanguard (TV series)


    "The OxyContin Express" also received the 2010 Television Academy Honor, a Prism Award and an Emmy nomination.


    Mariana van Zeller Wikipedia