HBO Launches Short Film Contest for AAPI “Visionary” Filmmakers

August 17, 2016


Are you an emerging AAPI filmmaker? If so, then this post is for you!

HBO announced today Asian Pacific American Visionaries, an exciting new opportunity for young AAPI filmmakers. APA Visionaries is a short film contest specifically geared towards emerging AAPI directors who use the medium of short film (either narrative or documentary) to explore the AAPI experience.

Filmmakers are invited to submit their shorts prior to the November 7th deadline.

A panel of film-making experts will select three winners from the pool of submitted films. Winning films will air at the Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival in April 2017, and the film will be licensed to be distributed through HBO on-air or streaming outlets during APA Heritage Month in May 2017.

An additional cash prize will be awarded to each of the winning filmmakers, and HBO will also provide travel money so that filmmakers can attend their film’s premiere at LAAPFF.

The contest is the first of its kind for HBO. Here are the posted rules:


1. Running time (inclusive of credits): 10-15 minutes. If a submission exceeds 15 minutes, only the first 15 will be judged.

2. Films must have been directed by a person of Asian or Pacific Islander descent

3. Director must be a U.S. citizen or U.S. legal resident

4. Director must be at least 18 years of age, and of legal age of majority in his/her state of residence (19 or older in AL and NE, 21 or older in MS and 18 or older in all other States/DC)

5. Films must be in the English language or contain English subtitles (common foreign words/phrases are acceptable)

6. Films must be a festival premiere (have had no previous major festival screenings under its current or any former title, or in any form that is, in HBO’s opinion, substantially similar to or derivative of the current film) through the scheduled date of May 31, 2017

7. Films must have commenced principal photography on or after October 1, 2015

8. Films must not have had any previous exhibition on broadcast or cable (by means of any method or medium) or online (personal, non-commercial websites may be excluded, at HBO’s sole discretion).

9. Employees of Home Box Office, Inc. (“HBO”) and any other Time Warner entity (including all permanent and temporary employees) and their immediate family members and/or those living in the same household are not eligible to participate in HBO Asian Pacific American Visionaries.

10. Entries must be submitted and received via with a password protected, downloadable Vimeo link no later than November 7, 2016 at 11:59 pm ET. (Please submit your film at a minimum 720p quality, in a h264 Quicktime MOV format.) Submissions must include the film, completed submission form and signed competition release.

Jackie Gagne, Vice President of Multicultural Marketing for HBO, said in a press statement with regard to the contest:

Our competition is designed to celebrate the unique experiences and unsung talent that exist within the Asian Pacific American community. We are also delighted and honored to have the support of incredible organizations with unparalleled legacies of promoting APA visionaries.

This is an incredible opportunity for emerging AAPI filmmakers, so get to making and submitting those awesome films, folks!

Comment Policy

Before posting, please review the following guidelines:

  • No ad hominem attacks: A person's identity, personal history, or background is not up for debate. Talk about ideas, not people.
  • Be courteous: Respect everyone else in this space.
  • Present evidence: This space endeavours to encourage academic and rational debate around identity politics. Do your best to build an argument backed not just with your own ideas, but also with science.
  • Don't be pedantic: Listen to those debating you not just for places to attack, but also where you might learn and even change your own opinion. Repeatedly arguing the same point irrespective of presented counterfacts will now be considered a violation of this site's comment policy.
  • Respect the humanity of all groups: To elevate the quality of debate, this site will no longer tolerate (racial, cultural, gender, etc.) supremacist or inferiority lines of argumentation. There are other places on the internet where nationalist arguments can be expressed; this blog is not those places.
  • Don't be an asshole: If you think your behaviour would get you punched in the face outside of the internets, don't say it on the internets.
  • Don't abuse Disqus features: Don't upvote your own comments. Don't flag other people's comments without reasonable cause. Basically, don't try to game the system. You are not being slick.

Is your comment not approved, unpublished, or deleted? Here are some common reasons why:

  • Did you sign in? You are required to register an account with Disqus or one of your social media accounts in order to comment.
  • Did your comment get caught in the spam filter? Disqus is set to automatically detect and filter out spam comments. Sometimes, its algorithm gets over-zealous, particularly if you post multiple comments in rapid succession, if your comment contains keywords often associated with spam, and/or if your comment contains multiple links. If your comment has been erroneously caught in the spam filter, contact me and I will retrieve it.
  • Did a comment get flagged? Comments will be default be published but flagged comments will be temporarily removed from view until they are reviewed by me.
  • Did you not play nice? You may have gotten banned and a bunch of your comments may have been therefore deleted. Sorry.

I monitor all comment threads, and try to address comments requiring moderation within 24-48 hours. Comments that violate this comment policy may receive a warning and removal of offensive content; overt or repeat violations are subject to deletion and/or banning of comment authors without warning.

I reserve final decision over how this comment policy will be enforced.


Play nice and don't be a jerk, and you'll do just fine.