Active primarily during the 1940s, '50s, and '60s, he directed such popular films as Gunfight at the O.K. Corral, The Great Escape, and The Magnificent Seven, and was nominated for an Oscar for his work on the 1955 feature Bad Day at Black Rock.
His early directing credits include a series of World War II-era U.S. Army Air Corps training movies, as well as the post-war Hollywood B-movie The Man Who Dared.
He was the 1990 recipient of the Western film genre's prestigious Golden Boot Award.
Born and raised in Oak Park, Illinois, he later settled in Southern California.
Japanese director Akira Kurosawa commended Sturges on his direction of The Magnificent Seven (which was an adaptation of the earlier Kurosawa film Seven Samurai).