Animated short film hedgehog depicts story of self-doubt and insecurity

Hedgehog is an award-winning animated short film directed by Ed Bulmer. It depicts the story of Gareth and his battle with self-doubt, which establishes itself as a hedgehog. The short-animated film reveals how fear can cripple from doing what one truly desires.

Gareth is suffering from an incapacitating sense of self-doubt, which takes the form of a spiny hedgehog. Dealing with anxiety triggered by self-doubt leads him to craft a false “comfort zone,” which keeps him from living a truly desired and fulfilling life.

Short-animated with profound teaching

Animator Ed Bulmer made this film as a graduate student at the National Film and Television School in Beaconsfield, England. This profound animation shows how anyone can be a slave to their own fears if they permit it.   

In Bulmer’s words, “Gareth suffers from a debilitating sense of self-doubt, which manifests in the form of a hedgehog…HEDGEHOG is my grad film I completed whilst studying at the National Film and Television School. It had a great festival run, premiering at Anima Mundi and winning the Jury Prize at Seoul International Animation Festival among a few other awards. The film combines three techniques – miniature sets, CG characters, and hand drawn facial expressions.”

Struggles with self-doubt

A man struggles throughout his life with self-doubt and social anxiety, and the manifestation of his fears appear in form of a hedgehog, which stops him in his tracks whenever he tries to do something he is scared of. The director brilliantly reminds the audiences that even the worst fears are simply creations of one’s own imagination.

In this short film, the animator captures a strange balancing act flawlessly and provides a powerful understanding of how people can be compassionate toward those in the middle of this daily struggle.