At SXSW Film we're regularly asked, "What if my film won't be completed with a final cut in time for your final submission deadline?"
The answer is: Not a problem - we will accept work-in-progress cuts, but with a few caveats.
During the submission process, SXSW programmers regularly screen work-in-progress cuts, but it's essential for you to understand we will only watch one cut! We will not watch a tighter, updated cut. We ask that the cut you submit should at least be picture locked, and that you include an opening slate listing what is incomplete and still to be finished. It is very common for us to watch films without their final sound mixes, color correction or completed visual effects.
Will you get special consideration for getting it to us early? No, it is highly recommended that you send your most complete and finished version as we do not accept updated cuts.
Note that we will not exhibit a work-in-progress during the festival except under very rare and special circumstances.