A screening committee drawn from documentary branch members has winnowed a field of 74 entries down to 10 semi-finalists for the Best Documentary Short Oscar using an averaged scoring system. This marks an increase from the eight it has been in the past. (See the full list below.)
All members of the branch can take part in the second round which kicks off on Dec. 30 and will be done by preferential voting. Five nominees will be announced along with the rest of the Academy Award contenders on Jan. 14. All members of the academy will receive DVDs of these nominees and can vote for the winner.
“Body Team 12″
“Chau, beyond the Line”
“Claude Lanzmann: Spectres of the Shoah”
“50 Feet from Syria”
“A Girl in the River: The Price of Forgiveness”
“Last Day of Freedom”
“My Enemy, My Brother”
As per the rules, a Documentary Short Subject is defined as a nonfiction motion picture “dealing creatively with cultural, artistic, historical, social, scientific, economic or other subjects” that is no more than 40 minutes in length.
Unlike the calendar-year eligibility for most of the other categories at the Oscars, these short films must meet screening requirements between Sept. 1, 2014 and Aug. 31, 2015. They must either: (i) be screened for seven says in either Los Angeles or Manhattan; (ii) win an award at a qualifying festival; or (iii) win a Student Academy Award.