HBO APA Visionaries Short Film Competion
Asian/Pacific Islander filmmakers, submit your short films.

Due April 1st, 2021 - Now in its 5th year, the HBO Asian Pacific American Visionaries is a short film competition sponsored by HBO that provides emerging directors of Asian and/or Pacific Islander descent the opportunity to showcase their work.

Judged by a panel of HBO executives, industry leaders, and fellow APA filmmakers, the competition seeks to identify cinematic storytellers who offer unique perspectives of the Asian Pacific American experience. The theme for the 2021 APA Visionaries Short Film Competition is “Taking the Lead.” Films should portray Asian Pacific Americans as being at the forefront of a given narrative, embracing the spirits of trailblazers, heroes, and luminaries through a unique lens.

Films must be an original live action narrative (no documentaries or animation).

In addition to receiving cash prizes, the three films will be selected to make their premiere at the Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival in September 2021, and offered the opportunity to license their film to premiere exclusively on HBO and stream on HBO via HBO Max.

Running time (inclusive of credits): 10-15 minutes. Film must be a minimum of 10 minutes in length; submissions shorter than 10 minutes in length will be disqualified. Films must be a maximum of 15 minutes in length (inclusive of title sequence and closing credits); if a submission is longer than 15 minutes in length, only the first 15 minutes of the Film will be judged. Videos longer than 17 minutes will be disqualified.

Click the link below for Official Rules and more details.


All three winnings films will have their theatrical premiere at the 2021 Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival, and will have the opportunity to screen on HBO platforms and stream on HBO via HBO Max. Additionally, the filmmakers will be awarded the following cash prizes:

1st Place:

2nd Place:

3rd Place:

Director and Co-director(s) must be a resident of one of the 50 United States or Washington, D.C. Films must have been directed by a person of Asian or Pacific Islander descent [i.e., descendants of the people of the Far East, Southeast Asia, Indian subcontinent or Pacific Islands (China, India, Japan, Korea, the Philippine Islands and Samoa)]. Director and Co-director(s) must be at least 18 years of age and of the age of majority in their state of residence (i.e., 19 years of age in Alabama and Nebraska; 21 years of age in Mississippi) as of 4/1/21.

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