We all know it’s not wise to put all of your eggs in one basket. That said, we know you will be submitting your film to multiple festivals for consideration and it is important to keep us posted if your premiere status will change from what you listed on your application.
Well over half of the 130+ feature films we screened in 2013 were World Premieres. The rest consisted of North American and U.S. Premieres, along with a limited number of non-US Premieres. Our Narrative and Documentary Feature Competition categories consist solely of World Premieres. So yes, the premiere status of your film is an important factor; and all things being equal, the premiere will get the shot. But it’s not absolute - we make exceptions for films we love. For example, the majority of our 2013 Festival Favorites section (consisting of 20 films) was comprised of films that launched at Sundance.
While it is a factor in our final decision-making, we don't place tough restrictions on the premiere status of shorts. In 2013 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. 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 you get invited to another festival and want to know where your film stands here at SXSW email firstname.lastname@example.org. We may not be able to give you an answer but we’ll do our best! Of course, we can't do anything until we actually watch your film, and we can't do that until you submit it to SXSW. Head to this page to find out how!