RiverRun International Film Festival is pleased to announce that it has been accepted as a qualifying festival for the Oscars® in the Animated Short Film category. The news was received this November from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. Beginning with this year’s Festival, recipients of RiverRun’s Jury Award for Best Animated Short will qualify for consideration in the Short Film category for animated shorts at the annual Academy Awards®. This prestigious accreditation designates RiverRun as one of a very limited number American film festivals who offer this route to Academy eligibility, allowing animated shorts to forgo a standard theatrical run, provided that winning films otherwise comply with Academy rules.

This new designation means that RiverRun is now an Academy qualifying Festival for two different categories: animated and documentary short films. In January 2014, RiverRun was named a qualifying Festival for documentary short films. At the 2014 Festival, filmmaker Konrad Kästner received the top jury prize for Best Documentary Short for his film Cathedrals, qualifying him to be eligible for Academy consideration in that category.

“Being accepted as a qualifying Festival by the Academy for our animation program is a huge honor – among the industry’s highest distinctions” said Andrew Rodgers, RiverRun Executive Director. “We were thrilled earlier this year when we received qualifying status for documentary short films. With this news, and the realization that the Academy views our animation program in equally high regard, we’re just over the moon! This new designation will not only bring an even greater level of industry prestige to RiverRun, though, it will also be a great thing for our community and the filmmakers we serve.”