SHORTS & MUSIC VIDEOS: What is the SXSW premiere and eligibility policy for short films?

While it is a factor in our final decision-making, we don't place tough restrictions on the premiere status of shorts. In 2016 over a third of our short films were world premieres, but we played a number of shorts that had appeared on the Internet and played at other festivals outside of Austin, Texas. If we really connect to and love a short film and it hasn't received a huge amount of attention we will try to share it with our audience.

If your short film has been publicly screened in Austin, Texas at another event or festival (i.e Austin Film Festival, Fantastic Fest, etc) it is INELIGIBLE for SXSW. If your short film HAS NOT screened in Austin, Texas, you are eligible to submit to SXSW.

These are the premiere status definitions recognized by SXSW:

World Premiere: Your short film has never screened publicly at any festival, in theaters, broadcast on television or online. 

North American Premiere: Your short film may have screened internationally, but has never been shown in the U.S., Canada, Mexico, in theaters, broadcast on television or online. 

U.S. Premiere: Your short film may have screened internationally but has never been shown in the U.S., in theaters, broadcast on television or online. 

Not a Premiere: Your short film may have screened publicly at any festival outside of Austin, been made available to a general public audience theatrically, broadcast on television or online. 

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