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a short animated film by Špela Čadež
Slovenia / Croatia | Sep 2016 | 8:45 min


Attempting to remove an unresponsive badger from a dark road, a police patrol soon realizes that the animal is not dead but rather dead drunk. Things take an even stranger turn when the creature wakes up.


Director: Špela Čadež
Scriptwriters: Gregor Zorc, Špela Čadež
Animators: Zarja Menart, Matej Lavrenčič, Špela Čadež
Editor: Iva Kraljević
Post-production: Mario Kalogjera
Voices: Andrej Nahtigal, Karin Komljanec, Gregor Zorc
Music: Tomaž Grom
Sound design: Johanna Wienert
Producers: Tina Smrekar, Špela Čadež / Finta Film
Co-producer: Vanja Andrijević / Bonobostudio
Co-producer: RTV Slovenija
Finacal Support: Slovenian Film Center,  Croatian Audiovisual Center

  1. Best Animated Film Award, Festival of Slovenian Film 2016
  2. Honorary Mention, DOK Leipzig 2016
  3. Very Special Jury Prize, Animated Dreams 2016
  4. Silver Jabberwocky, Etiuda&Anima Inter. Film Festival 2016
  5. Special Mention, Animateka Inter. Animated Film Festival 2016
  6. Audience Award, Animateka Inter. Animated Film Festival 2016
  7. Best Narrative Short, GLAS Animation Festival 2017
  8. Special Jury Prize, ANIMAKOM Bilbao 2017
  9. Grand Prix Short Narrative, Holland Animation Film Festival 2017
  10. Honorary Mention, Prix Ars Electronica 2017
  11. Second place in the International Short Film Competition, Chilemonos International Animation Festival 2017
  12. Grand Prix, Animafest Zagreb 2017
  13. Best Editing Award, Revue Kratki na brzinu 2017
  14. Special Mention, Countryside Animafest Cyprus 2017
  15. Special Mention, Supertoon Inter.Animation Festival 2017
  16. Best Animated Short Film, Imaginaria Inter. Animated Film Festival 2017
  17. Special Mention, Anibar International Animation Festival 2017
  18. Grand Prix, Animanima International Animation Festival 2017
  19. Special Mention, Animasyros Inter. Animation Festival 2017
  20. Special Mention, Stoptrik International Film Festival 2017
  21. Grand Prix, Bucheon International Animation Festival 2017
  22. Prize of the Cultural Office of the State Capital of Wiesbaden, Wiesbaden International Weekend of Animation 2017
  23. Special Mention, CRAFT International Animation Festival 2017
  24. ASIFA Croatia Award for the Best Croatian Film 2017
  • selection

    Ottawa International Animation Festival (21/9-25/9/2016)

    DOK Leipzig International Festival for Documentary and Animated Film (31/10-6/11/2016)

    Sundance Film Festival (19/1-29/1/2017)

    Göteborg Film Festival (27/1-5/2/2017)

    Clermont Ferrand International Short Film Festival (3/2-11/2/2017)

    ANIMA – Brussels Animation Festival (24/2 – 5/3/2017)

    GLAS Animation Festival (2/3-5/3/2017)

    Holland Animation Film Festival (22/3-26/3/2017)

    Filmfest Dresden International Short Film Festival (4/4-9/4/2017)

    Stuttgart International Festival of Animated Films (2/5-7/5/2017)

    Vienna Independent Shorts (1/6-6/6/2017)

    Animafest Zagreb – World Festival of Animated Film (5/6-10/6/2017)

    Annecy International Animation Festival (12/6-17/6/2017)

    Animator International Animated Film Festival (7/7-13/7/2017)

    Anima Mundi International Animation Festival (18/7-30/7/2017)

    Fantoche International Animation Film Festival (5/9-10/9/2017)

    Ars Electronica Animation Festival (7/9-11/9/2017)

    Encounters Short Film and Animation Festival (19/9-24/9/2017)

    Milano Film Festival (28/9-8/10/2017)

    Bucheon International Animation Festival (20/10-24/10/2017)

    Hiroshima International Animation Festival (23/8-27/8/2018)

It’s like Charles Bukowski and Steve McQueen teamed up with a badger to make a stop motion film about the tragic glaze, craze and daze of alcohol abuse.”
Chris Robinson, artistic director of the Ottawa International Animation Festival

Mesmerizing demonstration of how traditional animation can still be incredibly stunning.”
Maroš Brojo, artistic director of Fest Anča International Animation Fest

“Drunkenness can be at once comic and tragic, and both moods are encompassed in this freaky, freewheeling animated short. Spela Cadez’s Nighthawk is, in the simplest terms, a cautionary tale about the misery of alcoholism. But the boozer in question is a badger, his poison a bunch of rotten pears, his night on the town more of a road trip into nightmarish abstraction.”
Alex Dudok de Wit


October 6, 2016

Cut-out animation brings to life a story that is both disturbing and weird, and perfectly captures the experience of drunk driving. A badger lies motionless on a local road. A police patrol approaches the body in the dark. They soon realize that the animal is not dead; the badger is dead drunk! When the police attempt to drag the creature off the road, he wakes up and things take a strange turn…

Four Great Shorts from the Ottawa International Animation Festival, By Amid Amidi


A surreal story that is perfectly matched with a surreal cut-out style that transfers uncomfortably familiar human characteristics onto a badger.

Eternal Hunting Grounds, Nighthawk Win at DOKLeipzig

06 November 2016

“Honorary mention in the International Competition (Short Film) was given to Špela Čadež and her hallucinatory Night Hawk, for its fresh and visually imaginative take on a true story about a drunk badger.”

Animated Trips 2016: Part I, by Olga Bobrowska

07 January 2017

Regarding Špela Čadež’s Nighthawk it is though possible to state that the Slovenian artist was driven by the need to create a work that would be completely different from her previous films and so we are confronted with dark, non-judgemental and utterly sad story of addiction and humiliation. Nothing much happens in Nighthawk, yet after 8 minutes projection the emotions are risen high.

A badger intoxicated with pears drives madly into the night, argues with an imaginary passenger, almost dies on the road and has to be moved away by policemen’s shovel. Čadež openly referred to Yuri Norstein’s cut-out (another counterpoint to her previous films made in puppet technique) and realized the film on the old multiplane table.

Misty unreal settings evoke tale of self-destruction and contempt where in the end the viewer finds compassion instead of redemption. The aesthetics is based on graduation of d arkness, the badger with a repulsive red nose remains the central figure and his positioning mostly dictates the editing. Dialogues are either drunk’s gibberish or trivial conversations of random passers by. Simplicity is an effect of complex and challenging filmmaking and only this impressive reduction is able to bare and transmit painful and manifold drama.

Animateka 2016 – Jour 6 : une fin en apothéose ! by Nicolas Thys


‘Blind Vaysha’ and ‘Nighthawk’ Top Industry Survey of 2016’s Best Animated Shorts

By Amid Amidi, 12/29/2016

Zippy Frames, a solid European resource that covers animation festivals and films, surveyed an esteemed group of 28 industry professionals, including festival programmers, academics, and filmmakers (among them Tomm Moore, Konstantin Bronzit, and Sarah Saidan), about their favorite animated shorts of 2016.

Each particpant was asked to list three independent animation shorts that impressed/impacted them during 2016 (films that started their festival run in 2015 were also eligible). Two films tied for first place, with six votes apiece: Theodore Ushev’s Blind Vaysha (Canada/France) and Špela Čadež’s Nighthawk (Slovenia/Croatia). Rounding out the top five were Alberto Vázquez’s Decorado, Marta Pajek’s Impossible Figures and Other Stories II, and Réka Bucsi’s Love.

Blind Vaysha, Nighthawk Top 2016 Animation Shorts

Monday, 26 December

28 animation professionals,  from Tomm Moore (Secret of Kells) to Konstantin Bronzit (Lavatory- Lovestory) to up-and-coming animation directors loke Sarah Saidan (Beach Flags), festival programmers and academics, were all invited to give their view.

Maroš Brojo (Fest Anča): Mesmerizing demonstration of how traditional animation can still be incredibly stunning.

Igor Prassel (Animateka):  a masterful antropomorphic depiction of alcoholism through the use of multiplane cut-out animation.

The best indie animation of 2016

6 January 2017

Nighthawk, Špela Čadež, Slovenia

If Charles Bukowski scripted Bullit with a badger, the result might look something like Nighthawk, a blistering, squirming tragedy trailing an alcoholic whizzing blurrily through bending roads in the black of night. If you’re thinking about ditching booze, watching this blunt depiction of an alcohol abuser might hasten the process.

Nighthawk, short film by Špela Čadež
Poster design by Roman Ražman

The Making of

Description of animation technique
The aesthetic in Nighthawk was created with
the use of a multiplane camera set up, achieving
motion in animation with the help of oil-painted
cell and paper cut-outs. Following the footsteps
of the Russian master Yuriy Norshteyn, Čadež
already used the multiplane technique on her
previous film, Nighthawk and developed its
use further in Steakhouse. Čadež is inclined
to combining traditional and experimental
techniques to solve creative challenges in the film
and search for the inherent visual representation
of the storyline and its characters.