Hedgehog in the Fog

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Hedgehog in the Fog
Directed byYuri Norstein
Produced bySoyuzmultfilm
Written bySergei Kozlov
StarringAlexei Batalov
Maria Vinogradova
Vyacheslav Nevinniy
Music byMikhail Meyerovich
CinematographyNadezhda Treschyova
Edited byNatalia Abramova
Release date
October 23, 1975
Running time
10 min 29 s

Hedgehog in the Fog (Russian: Ёжик в тумане, tr. Yozhik v tumane, IPA: [ˈjɵʐɨk f tʊˈmanʲɪ]) is a 1975 Soviet animated film directed by Yuri Norstein,[1] produced by the Soyuzmultfilm studio in Moscow.[2][3] The Russian script was written by Sergei Kozlov, who also published a book under the same name. In 2006, Norstein published a book titled Hedgehog in the Fog, listing himself as an author alongside Kozlov.[4]


This is a story about a little hedgehog (voiced by Maria Vinogradova), who is on his way to visit his friend the bear cub. As explained in the introductory narration, the two would meet every evening to drink tea from the cub's samovar, which was heated on a fire of juniper twigs. As they drank their tea, the hedgehog and the bear would chat and count the stars together.

On this day, the hedgehog decides to bring the bear cub some raspberry jam. As Hedgehog heads out, a sinister looking eagle-owl is following him. Hedgehog passes through the woods and encounters a beautiful white horse standing in a fog. He is curious as to whether the horse would drown if it went to sleep in the fog. The hedgehog decides to explore the fog for himself. As he goes down an incline into the fog, it is soon so thick that the hedgehog cannot even see his own paw.

The fog alternately thickens and thins; when it thins the hedgehog briefly catches vague sight of objects and creatures which disappear again as the fog thickens. Hedgehog finds himself in a surreal and frightening world inhabited by shapes which are not always identifiable and various creatures ranging from predators to friendly animals, in a world of silence and rustles, darkness, tall grass and enchanting lightning bugs and stars.

The owl, which has been following the hedgehog, appears near him suddenly and hoots; only to disappear again, prompting the Hedgehog to call it a psycho. The hedgehog is frightened, but his curiosity keeps him exploring the unknown. Occasionally, an unseen distant voice is heard calling out for Hedgehog. As Hedgehog explores a large hollow tree, he realizes he has lost the raspberry jam. As he stumbles along, a large dog finds him and gives it to him.

Hedgehog falls into a river and believes he is going to drown. He floats downstream on his back and is rescued, possibly by a fish, and is set on shore. The Hedgehog arrives at the campfire where bear cub is brewing tea. Bear (voiced by Vyacheslav Nevinny) explains that he was calling for the hedgehog, worried that he was late. The two sit together drinking tea and the bear talks and the hedgehog thinks of the horse.[5][6]


Hedgehog in the Fog on the 1988 USSR stamp.
Director Yuri Norstein (Юрий Норштейн)
Writer Sergei Kozlov (Сергей Козлов)
Art Director Francheska Yarbusova (Франческа Ярбусова)
Animator Yuri Norstein (Юрий Норштейн)
Camera Operator Alexandr Zhukovskiy (Александр Жуковский)
Composer Mikhail Meyerovich (Михаил Меерович)
Sound Operator Boris Filchikov (Борис Фильчиков)
Script Editor Natalya Abramova (Наталья Абрамова)
Voice Actors Aleksey Batalov (Алексей Баталов) Narrator
Maria Vinogradova (Мария Виноградова) Hedgehog
Vyacheslav Nevinny (Вячеслав Невинный) Bear cub
Film Editor Nadezhda Treshchyova (Надежда Трещёва)


  • 1976—Frunze All-Union Film Festival: Hedgehog in the Fog "best animated film"
  • 1976—Tehran Children's and Youth Film Festival: Hedgehog in the Fog "best animated film"
  • 2003—Tokyo All time animation best 150 in Japan and Worldwide: Hedgehog in the Fog "№1 Animated film of all the time"


The fog effects were created by putting a very thin piece of paper on top of the scene and slowly lifting it up toward the camera frame-by-frame until everything behind it became blurry and white.[7]

Role in Soviet animation[edit]

Soviet era children's animation and literature was faced with the task of producing politically acceptable content. Anthropologist Serguei Oushakine recognizes this atmosphere of indefinite deferment in the animation, stating: "The main thing is the work of imagination, or more precisely, the terror and pleasure with which it is linked. The final scene of pleasure, to which these various phantasmal and/or realistic experiences should indeed have led, is not included in the plot."[8] This is evident through the hedgehog's anxiety and fixation on the horse, even after he succeeds in meeting the bear for tea.


Hedgehog on graffiti. Kharkov, 2008

Hedgehog in the Fog was ranked #1 in a poll at the 2003 Laputa Animation Festival where 140 animators from around the world voted for the best animated films of all time.[9]

Since January 2009 the main character (the Hedgehog) from the movie has a statue in the city center of the capital of Ukraine, Kiev.[10]

The film was referenced in the third episode of the eighth season of the animated comedy series Family Guy, "Spies Reminiscent of Us", in 2009.

The opening ceremonies for the 2014 Winter Olympics referenced this work, mentioning it in a list of signature Russian accomplishments and artists, including Fyodor Dostoyevsky, Leo Tolstoy, and Sputnik.[11]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Jeff Lenburg (2006). Who's who in Animated Cartoons: An International Guide to Film & Television's Award-winning and Legendary Animators. Hal Leonard Corporation. p. 264. ISBN 978-1-557-83671-7.
  2. ^ "The 77 best kids' films of all time. Hedgehog in the Fog (1975)". telegraph.co.uk. 6 May 2017. Retrieved 25 May 2017.
  3. ^ Clare Kitson (2005). Yuri Norstein and Tale of Tales: An Animator's Journey. Indiana University Press. pp. 46–48. ISBN 978-0-253-21838-4.
  4. ^ Ежик в тумане. Ozon.ru. Retrieved on 2012-11-23.
  5. ^ Maureen Thomas,François Penz (2003). Architectures of Illusion: From Motion Pictures to Navigable Interactive Environments. Intellect Books. ISBN 978-1-841-50045-4.
  6. ^ Mark Whitehead (2004). Animation: The Pocket Essential Guide. Summersdale Publishers LTD - ROW. p. 113. ISBN 978-1-848-39836-8.
  7. ^ "Все свободны" – разговор на свободные темы. svoboda.org (2007-07-04)
  8. ^ Alaniz, Jos&#xe9 (2011). "Reviewed work: Veselye chelovechki: Kul'turnie geroi sovetskogo detstva. Nauchnaia biblioteka, I. Kukulin, M. Lipovetskii, M. Maiofis". Russian Review. 70 (3): 513–515. JSTOR 41289990.
  9. ^ 世界と日本のアニメーションベスト150. ふゅーじょんぷろだくと. 2003. ASIN 4893933671.
  10. ^ Monument to “Hedgehog in Fog” appeared in Kyiv, UNIAN (2009-01-27)
  11. ^ NBC sets talky tone with Olympics Opening Ceremony https://www.stltoday.com/entertainment/television/gail-pennington/nbc-sets-talky-tone-with-olympics-opening-ceremony/article_b1e7f054-e4c3-5780-af20-79a9fba234a0.html

External links[edit]