Depends on the complexity of the project and the specs of your laptop. 12 hours isn’t that out of the ordinary though, I remember having a extruded logo animation and it was saying 48 hours to render. And that was only a ten second sequence!
But yeah, if you have lots of 3D layers then that can cause some pretty slow render times. Effects like noise, depth of field and 3D shadows can slow things down quite considerably as well.
A lot of times you might get a bit of a bottleneck when it comes to your hard drive, seeing you’re on a laptop. I’m guessing you’ve got a 5,400rpm drive which is standard for laptops. A 7,400rpm, 10,000rpm or an SSD might speed things up.
You could also try rendering multiple frames simultaneously, although with only 8GB of RAM it might not be worth it, and could actually slow things down further. Worth a try though. But yeah, speaking to the author is your best bet, then can tell you how long it should take, and hopefully provide suggestions to speed things up.