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Film Genres

This guide highlights library resources for some of the more popular film genres.

Introduction to short films

A broad category of films defined by their short running time in comparison with that of the feature film. For the purposes of the ‘Animated Short Film’ and ‘Live Action Short Film’ categories in the Academy Awards, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences defines a short film as forty minutes or less. At the Venice Film Festival, the limit set in entries in the short film category is thirty minutes or less. Short film formats were the dominant form in early cinema, with actualities, newsreels, serials, travel films, and animation all prominent. Through the silent era films increased in length from two-reelers to feature films, which quickly became dominant. Cinema programmes until the late 1950s often included short cartoons, travelogues, newsreels, etc. alongside the main feature.  ...

Kuhn, A., & Westwell, G. (2020). short film. In A Dictionary of Film Studies. Oxford University Press. Retrieved 17 May. 2021

In the library's collections

To find short films or books about short films in the Library's collections, you can click on the subject heading below:

Introductory reading(s)

Selected book title(s)

Finding scholarly articles & journal title(s)

Articles and other writings about short films can be found in many publications. We don't have journals that look exclusively at short films. However, you can use Film & Television Literature Index to find relevant articles or use the search box at the top of the page.

A Selected list of comedies

More film shorts in the collections.

Internet resource(s)