Sugar was born to a Jewish family and attended the Armand Hammer United World College of the American West in New Mexico after which he completed his undergraduate studies in 1995 at Brandeis University. He went on to study law at Georgetown University. He is the son of producer/distributor Larry Sugar, and is married to Lauren Wall Sugar.
Michael’s list of literary and talent clients includes Steven Soderbergh, Richard Linklater, Cary Fukunaga, Edgar Wright, Marc Webb, Patty Jenkins, and Robin Wright, among others.
Michael was previously an Executive Producer on Cinemax’s critically acclaimed drama series The Knick, starring Clive Owen and directed by Steven Soderbergh. He is currently an Executive Producer on the Netflix series' The OA, co-created by Zal Batmanglij client Brit Marling, who also stars; Maniac, starring Emma Stone amd Jonah Hill, and directed by client Cary Fukunaga; and 13 Reasons Why, starring Dylan Minnette and Katherine Langford.
On the film side, Sugar won an Academy Award for Best Picture as Producer on Spotlight (2015), starring Mark Ruffalo, Michael Keaton, and Rachel McAdams. Through his Sugar23 banner, Michael is actively producing a lengthy development slate, including projects from clients Steven Soderbergh, Cary Fukunaga, and Patty Jenkins.
Michael is a member of the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, lectures regularly at USC, NYU, Columbia and the American Film Institute. He has been nominated for an Emmy Award, and in 2014 he won a Peabody Award for The Knick.