Doctor Who: What is ‘feature length’?

There have been, apparently, complaints from Doctor Who fans that the BBC promised a ‘feature length’ 50th anniversary episode which turns out to be only 75 minutes.

I wasn’t one of them but I have always interpreted ‘feature length’ to mean 90 minutes at least.

When Radio 4 or Radio 4 Extra announce that a drama is ‘feature length’ it is just that.

However, ‘feature length’ is actually shorter than you may think.

According to the rules of The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, who award the Oscars, ‘feature length’ means 40 minutes or more.

If you accept that definition, then every episode of Doctor Who since 2005 has been ‘feature length’.

In fact, that definition means that almost all UK produced drama (other than soaps) on radio and television is ‘feature length’.

But let’s not get tied up in technicalities; let’s get ready to enjoy an ‘extended’ episode celebrating 50 years of the show we all love.

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