HBO Launches Short Film Contest for AAPI “Visionary” Filmmakers


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!

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