Media Release

HBO Max x WarnerMedia Access Launch Animated Shorts Program for Underrepresented Talent in Primetime Adult Animation

Applications open October 5 for aspiring creators of adult animation programming in the U.S. and Canada


HBO Max x WarnerMedia Access Shorts Program

WarnerMedia, a division of AT&T Inc., announces a new mentorship and training program geared toward developing historically underrepresented talent in primetime animation. The HBO Max x WarnerMedia Access Animated Shorts Program will provide up to seven artists with the tools, instruction, and resources to create original animated short films for adult audiences.

The theme for this inaugural program is “Only You,” as HBO Max looks to discover artists whose style and voice push the boundaries of what’s possible in animation and storytelling. During the six to nine-month program, which launches January 2022, participants will explore various career pathways and learn the business of producing an animation project, with comprehensive production budget resources to develop their original one to five-minute animated short. Industry experts will conduct virtual Master Classes on production cycle topics, including script writing, storyboard and animatic, and character and location design. Selected creators will work independently on their projects and will have scheduled check-ins with a dedicated mentor and a seasoned producer who will guide participants through the entire process. Completed projects will have the opportunity to reach global audiences, streaming exclusively on HBO Max.

“So many of the world’s best animators got their start with an animated short,” said Aaron Davidson, Director, Comedy and Animation, HBO Max.“We’re proud to offer a space where creators that have yet to be discovered can nurture and share their ideas with the world while learning from and working with the very best storytellers the industry has to offer.”

“The future of animation for mature audiences has never been more promising,and HBO Max is eager to discover artists with a distinctive creative lens who push the boundaries of primetime animation and creative storytelling in ways no one else is doing,” said Karen Horne, Senior Vice President, Equity and Inclusion, WarnerMedia. “We’re looking for unique visual artistry, originality and characters that transport viewers into boundless, imagined worlds.”

The program is intended for historically underrepresented creators who identify as Indigenous, Black, LatinX, Asian, MENA and other communities of color, people with disabilities and members of LGBTQ2+ communities. Submissions from international candidates will be accepted provided creators have the right to work in the U.S. or Canada.The Canadian component of the program will seek out Indigenous artists, selected through a key collaboration betweenimagineNATIVEand WarnerMedia Access Canada. Applicants must be a resident of Canada for the Canadian cohort only.

Applicants must be 18 or older and can apply for free between Oct. 5 - 24. Artists who previously have not had the opportunity to create an original work for a network or streamer are eligible. More details on the program, application, submission materials, evaluation criteria and link to apply can be found here:

About HBO Max

HBO Max™ is WarnerMedia’s direct-to-consumer streaming platform, offering best in class quality entertainment. HBO Max features the greatest array of storytelling for all audiences from the iconic brands of HBO, Warner Bros., DC, Cartoon Network, Adult Swim, Turner Classic Movies and much more. The platform launched in the United States in May 2020 and introduced a lower priced, advertising-supported tier in June 2021.  HBO Max recently began its global rollout launching in 39 markets across Latin America and the Caribbean, and HBO Max will enter Europe later this year and into next as it begins replacing the HBO-branded streaming services.  

About WarnerMedia 

WarnerMedia is a leading media and entertainment company that creates and distributes premium and popular content from a diverse array of talented storytellers and journalists to global audiences through its consumer brands including: HBO, HBO Max, Warner Bros., TNT, TBS, truTV, CNN, DC, New Line, Cartoon Network, Adult Swim, Turner Classic Movies and others. The organization also includes Xandr’s suite of advanced advertising solutions designed to help improve advertising for brands, publishers, and consumers.  WarnerMedia is part of AT&T Inc. (NYSE:T). 

About WarnerMedia Access

At WarnerMedia we believe in authentic, meaningful connection—to each other, to culture, and to our consumer. That’s why we empower fearless storytellers who bring our world into focus—and create cultural touchstones with the power to draw us together. Through best-in-class talent development programs, mentorship, placement opportunities and industry exposure, WarnerMedia Access serves as a powerful conduit connecting under-represented Talent to our content and brands. For more information on WarnerMedia Access visit

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