What is the difference between a short and a feature in terms of length/running time?

As an Oscar qualifying festival for Animated, Narrative and Documentary Short Films, SXSW follows the same guidelines as the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. They define a short film as any film that has a running time of 40 minutes or less, including all credits. A feature is defined as any film with a runtime over 40 minutes.

The majority of the shorts we screen are programmed into 90-minute blocks meaning that screen time is limited. Keep in mind that the tighter your short is, the easier it is to fit into a program, and that the longer it is, the more outstanding and unique it has to be.

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