short film by Ye’ela Rosenfeld
Hedgehog tells the story of Hannah, a young hispanic caregiver, who accidentally discovers that one of her patients – Mr. Holtz, might be a former Nazi criminal, hiding under a false identity.
This suspenseful and heartfelt drama raises one of the most difficult questions in modern history: were the murderers of millions of children, women and men, evil monsters or ordinary men? Could each and every one of us be capable of the unimaginable?
Genre: Short, Drama
When there’s a war criminal lying in a nursing home bed, what’s more terrifying—the fact that someone must tend to a person who helped murder 500,000 people, or that this frail human seems so ordinary that they’re worthy of sympathy?
That’s the struggle between a young caregiver and the Nazi war criminal she’s tasked with caring for in “Hedgehog”, the upcoming dramatic short film by Ye’ela Rosenfeld.
Ye’ela Rosenfeld has spent fifteen years working around the world and across varying artistic mediums as a writer, editor, producer, and director. She began her filmmaking path in the Israeli film and television industry, spent four years in Prague as a writer and director, and has since carried her talents to Los Angeles.
Since moving to the U.S, she has directed four films and the acclaimed theatre show “The Physicists” by Friedrich Durrenmatt. In 2019 she started her own theatre company, The Social Stage, which opened with a sold out run of “Marx in Soho” by Howard Zinn. Her film “Just in Case” won the Special Jury Selection Award at the Lady Filmmakers Film Festival and the Award of Merit at the Los Angeles Cinema Festival of Hollywood.
“Hedgehog” explores the deeply conflicting elements of humanity that co-exist in a person who has helped commit mass murder: cruelty contrasted with charm, inhuman apathy contrasted with a brittle and vulnerable soul. It asks the question—does a person need to be evil to commit acts of cruelty, or could any ordinary human—you or me—commit these atrocities in a similar circumstance?
Ye’ela Rosenfeld gave us her perspective on the unsettling themes of “Hedgehog”, and here’s what she had to say.
Where did you guys shoot and when?
How long was production?
“We shot for three days.”
Any stories you’d like to share from production?
“Hedgehog was almost shot twice before. The first time it was planned to be shot in August 2018 at the American Jewish University in Bel Air with an entirely different cast and production team. It was in pre-production but then got canceled when an investor pulled out. The second time, it was supposed to be shot in April 2020 at the Melrose Gardens Senior home, again with an entirely different cast and production team. Needless to say, due to the global pandemic, this too did not happen and had to be canceled a few weeks before shooting. So this was the third and finally successful attempt of realizing this script.”
What was your post-production process like?
“Post Production was a lot simpler, I edited the movie at home and with my husband who is an audio engineer and a sound designer doing the sound in our home studio and a family friend composing, it was all done “in house” pun intended. The only challenge was to discover that the main character’s birthmark, which was done by makeup, was not prominent enough and had to be enhanced in color correction. With a limited to no Post Production budget, we were lucky to rely on resourceful colorists to do it very quickly and for very little money…”
What’s your favorite shot in the video?
“Visually speaking I really like the scene by the window at dawn. I feel that it looks very compelling and atmospheric and the gentle rays of the sun rising at the end of it are absolutely beautiful.”
Is the film available for viewers to watch now? If so, where?
“Not yet. We are in the middle of festival submissions and the plan is to run it through the festival circuit for several months before thinking about distribution.”
“Yup. submitted to over 20 festivals so far and will probably submit to about 10-15 more. Answers should begin to arrive at the beginning of December.”
What are you looking to direct next? What are you excited about now?
“My next film is called “The First Day of Spring.” It is a feature film that I wrote and intend to direct. It’s a nocturnal journey of a teenage girl to find love, while encountering the Los Angeles homeless crisis and income inequality. The film currently has some producers and talent attached.”
HEDGEHOG – BTS
Fable House is a video production company based in Baton Rouge, Louisiana that specializes in production for film, video, commercials, and TV. Our team are experts in physical production, post-production, and VFX. We produce content for major brands, TV networks like Syfy and Lifetime, and provide production services to Louisiana’s never-say-die indie filmmakers.