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AT&T Hello Lab's Diversity-Focused Mentorship Program Premieres 5 Short Films on DIRECTV NOW

Mentors include Academy Award winners Octavia Spencer and Common.

AT&T is No. 3 on the DiversityInc Top 50 Companies for Diversity 


AT&T Hello Lab, a slate of original entertainment created by, for and with Millennial and Gen Z audiences, debuted five short films as part of its Mentorship Program on DIRECTV NOW on Dec. 1.

The program is a new initiative that brings together entertainment industry leaders with aspiring filmmakers from diverse backgrounds as they create a piece of work that supports their creative vision.

Each short celebrates young adults and provides the filmmakers with a place to share their unique perspective and authentic voice.

  • The Lost by Neil Paik; mentored by Rick Famuyiwa - The events surrounding a highly publicized protest altercation are played out from three differing points of view.

  • Yoshua by Matthew Castellanos; mentored by Nina Yang Bongiovi - A group of outcast teens must flee their hometown of South Central to protect their big blue alien friend from a ban against its kind.

  • Last Two Lovers at the End of the World by Nefertite Nguvu; mentored by Common - A future-set, New Year's Eve wild night's journey that follows two young lovers as they try to outsmart the end of the world.

  • Candid by Gabrielle Shephard; mentored by Octavia Spencer - Faced with the memory of her late mother, an aspiring street photographer takes a surreal journey through the city as she reconciles her future and the relationship with her father.

  • Tooth & Nail by Sara Shaw; mentored by Desiree Akhavan - After their youngest child is diagnosed with terminal cancer, an estranged family reunites and struggles to overcome their dysfunction.

During the year-long creative process, the filmmakers were fully supported by AT&T, Fullscreen and a group of industry advisors who counseled them on pitching their work, managing budgets and directing character-driven narratives.

More on the filmmakers:

Gabrielle Shepard: Graduated as an MFA Film and Television Producing Fellow in the Conservatory of Motion Pictures at Chapman University. She has produced films that have been programmed in the Austin Film Festival, Pan African Film Festival and Cannes Short Film Corner. Gabrielle now pursues fresh and dynamic projects to bring to life as a writer, director and producer.  She currently works in the Motion Picture Lit department at William Morris Endeavor.

Matthew Castellanos: A Mexican-American filmmaker from South Central, Los Angeles. He intends for his stories to start new discussions and shed some light on humanity. For the past two years, he's produced and directed twelve digital television shows on artist Tyler, the creator's network GOLF MEDIA. This August, Matthew's first linear television show NUTS + BOLTS premieres on the network VICELAND, which he's serving as both executive producer and director.

Neil M. Paik: A filmmaker and artist from Los Angeles. After graduating from the film school at UCLA, where he was editor of the Daily Bruin, he filmed a documentary on the ground in the Middle East analyzing diverse perspectives in the conflict zone. His short fiction films have garnered several awards while playing at festivals nationwide. Over the last three years, he has worked in development and production at Warner Bros., Color Force, and WME and as a director's assistant.

Nefertite Nguvu: A graduate of New York's School of Visual Arts, where she obtained a B.F.A in Film. Her thesis project at SVA won the award for outstanding screenplay. Nefertite is an award-winning writer/director and producer whose work includes, several narrative and documentary shorts, a host of web based programming, and a feature film entitled "In The Morning" which is currently available worldwide via Video on Demand.

Sara Shaw: A director and editor. While attending NYU's graduate film program at the Tisch School of the Arts, her film Ballarat Ghost Town won the Grand Prize and Audience Award at the Fusion Film Festival. She has edited a number of feature films, including Desiree Akhavan's Appropriate Behavior (Sundance '14), Adam Leon's Tramps (Toronto '16), Theresa Rebeck's Trouble (SIFF '17), and Desiree Akhavan's forthcoming The Miseducation of Cameron Post.

Fullscreen Media, a next-generation entertainment company, is majority owned by Otter Media, a partnership between AT&T and The Chernin Group.

AT&T Gives More Than Half a Million Dollars to Dallas Agencies to Help the Homeless

AT&T Launches believe DallasSM, an extension of AT&T BelievesSM.

Originally Published by AT&T.

AT&T*, is committed to helping build a better tomorrow for the homeless community in the city of Dallas. We're doing that through a new initiative we call "Believe DallasSM," with the goal of mitigating homelessness for service-accepting families and veterans in Dallas.

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AT&T: 25 Years Later, You Will

We've brought together the people who worked on this campaign to recall their vision back in 1993. And we've also gathered AT&T experts and futurists to predict what 25 years from now may look like.

Originally Published by AT&T.

Twenty-five years ago, we dared people to imagine a world where you could take a meeting from the beach, talk to someone through your watch, and even get directions from your car's dashboard.

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AT&T: Distracted Driving on Two Wheels: A New Reality

Break the habit and take the pledge to end distracted driving in and out of the car at ItCanWait.com.

Originally Published by AT&T.

By Ryan Luckey, Assistant Vice President, Corporate Brand Marketing

The roads can be a scary place. Drivers are taking their eyes off the road to look at their latest like, text or email.

And with the introduction of shared e-scooters, the latest in transportation innovation, it's more important than ever for riders and drivers to keep their eyes on the road.

One hand on the handlebar, another on the phone, then bam. You hit a pothole.

Tens of thousands of injuries – and hundreds of deaths – occur every year due to smartphone distracted driving. This is the unfortunate reality our AT&T It Can Wait program continues to address since 2010.

And now it's becoming clear smartphone distractions are no longer just a problem in the car.

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AT&T: HACEMOS Drives Diversity in STEM

AT&T's HACEMOS group helps drive Latino diversity in STEM fields with 20th Annual High Technology Day.

Originally Published by AT&T.

School used to be all about the 3 Rs: reading, 'riting, and 'rithmatic. But the future is all about all about STEM – Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math. That's why HACEMOS, AT&T's Hispanic/Latino employee resource group, is introducing students to STEM during their 20th annual High Technology Day on Thursday, Oct. 18.

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AT&T Launches New Advertising Company, Xandr

AT&T Advertising & Analytics is Now Xandr, A New Kind of Advertising Company Harnessing Data, Technology, Premium Content and Distribution.

Originally Published by AT&T.

AT&T* announced the launch of XandrSM, its new advertising company led by CEO Brian Lesser. The announcement was made at the Relevance Conference, Xandr's inaugural conference in Santa Barbara, California.

Xandr encompasses all aspects of the existing AT&T advertising & analytics businesses, including AT&T's advanced TV business, AT&T AdWorks; AT&T's data and analytics business; ATT.net and AppNexus, which will continue to support its US and global customers under the Xandr umbrella.

"Xandr is a name that draws inspiration from AT&T's rich history, including its founder Alexander Graham Bell, while imagining how to innovate and solve new challenges for the future of advertising," said Lesser. "Our purpose is to Make Advertising Matter and to connect people with the brands and content they care about. Throughout AT&T's 142-year history, it has innovated with data and technology, making its customers' lives better. Xandr will bring that spirit of innovation to the advertising industry."

This new kind of advertising company has four key advantages, which include data, premium content, advanced advertising technology and AT&T's distribution to more than 170 million direct-to-consumer relationships across wireless, video and broadband.1

Advancing Advanced TV

To further strengthen its leadership in advanced TV advertising, Xandr has entered into agreements with Altice USA and Frontier Communications to aggregate and sell their national addressable TV advertising inventory. This initial step starts to create the foundation of a national TV marketplace for advertisers and premium content publishers. Xandr will also collaborate with a4, Altice USA's advanced advertising business, to help expand a4's nationwide addressable digital advertising capabilities.

By aggregating this video inventory from multiple multichannel video programming distributors (MVPDs), AT&T's addressable TV offering starts to provide advertisers with a one-stop shop. This allows marketers to reach the audiences they want to connect with most, while improving yield by helping inventory owners compete more effectively.

By combining data with advertising technology, addressable TV allows advertisers to more effectively reach their audiences without the wasted spend associated with traditional, non-targeted TV.

Consumer-Centric Advertising

Xandr's unique differentiator is its commitment to personalization, while considering the human element of advertising and people – not just placements.

To underscore its commitment, Xandr teamed up with Insight Strategy Group and Advertiser Perceptions to conduct surveys and on-the-ground ethnographies in order to understand the dynamics between consumer sentiment and the advertising experience.

These findings formed the basis of the inaugural Xandr Relevancy Report, original research on the state of consumer attention, which found 66 percent of consumers wish advertisements were more relevant to their interests and lifestyle, while 57 percent said ads are not relevant to them.

However, consumers recognized the importance of advertising: 64 percent of those surveyed believe advertising enables independent voices to be heard on the Internet, while 70 percent like when ads go beyond just selling a product.

Additional findings can be found in the Xandr Relevancy Report, including examples of how relevant advertising and data-driven insights can result in better consumer experiences.

AT&T Foundry Launches Innovation Space for Vertical Industries

Enterprise Customers Get Venue to Co-Create Innovative Technologies to Solve Industry-Specific Challenges.

Originally Published by AT&T.

Revolutionary technology breakthroughs in business don't happen by accident. That's why AT&T* is launching a vertical industry-focused space at the AT&T Foundry in Plano to showcase our edge-to-edge network capabilities and develop transformative technologies.

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AT&T Announces Largest Deployment of Free Aira Service

AT&T, Aira Use Groundbreaking Technology to Bring Retail Experience to Blind & Low- Vision Shoppers at Over 5,300 AT&T Retail Locations.

Originally Published by AT&T.

AT&T* and Aira continue to expand their relationship to bring new experiences to the blind and those with low vision. This time, it's the customer experience. All AT&T company-owned retail and authorized retail stores are now Aira Access Locations. That means that any member of the blind and low-vision community with a smartphone can become an Aira Guest and can get free use of Aira's service at over 5,300 AT&T retail locations across the U.S.

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AT&T: FirstNet Momentum: More Than 2,500 Public Safety Agencies Subscribed

The FirstNet Network Platform Has Been Reliably Supporting First Responders Battling Wildfires and Other Emergencies Nationwide.

Originally Published by AT&T.

More than 2,500 public safety agencies across the country have joined FirstNet. This is nearly double the number of agencies since the last update in July.

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