Documentary | 21’ | nov 2023

There are 8,765 hours in a year, and at the end of it, millions of euros’ worth of fireworks go up in smoke in the Netherlands, as in many other parts of the world. Many people enjoy this, but for animals, New Year’s Eve is a total nightmare. To make their experience tangible, Sebastian Mulder’s documentary takes an original approach: in the run-up to the big night, dogs belonging to different owners are fitted with a GoPro, and we follow their movements.

From the first bangs during the day to the deafening spectacle at midnight and in the hours afterwards, we witness the tension, stress and fear of the animals and their owners. This is certainly no celebration. We also see the effects on animals in pastures and in nature—the panic among horses, foxes and birds is filmed using infrared cameras.

The poetry of the nighttime shots and the fireworks filmed in slow motion contrast starkly with the trembling, panting and slobbering animals in bare bathrooms and under beds. No commentary is needed, the images and sound speak for themselves, and the message is loud and clear—even louder than the fireworks.

And a Happy New Year is a coproduction with Dieren Bescherming Nederland, Amsterdams Fonds voor de KunstStichting Bouwstenen voor Dierenwelzijn, Mevrouw de Advocaat, De Koninklijke Hondenbescherming, World Animal Protection, Stichting Abri Voor Dieren, Nederlands Film Fonds and Stichting Dier & Recht. The film is also made possible by the A-38 Stipendium from Kasseler Dokfest and all the donors at our Voordekunst crowdfunding campaign

Director: Sebastian Mulder

D.O.P at Bieschbos: Dick Harrewijn
First Asistant Camera at Bieschbos: Annefleur de Rochemont
Animal Harnas Designer: Esmée Kulik
Image Research: Bregje van Schie
Editor: Nina Graafland, Sebastian Mulder

Sound Design: Nick Smith, Stainless Sound
Title Design: Amos Mulder
Color Correction: Michiel Rummens, Amator
Mix: Ruben de Wither, Sound Adventure
Post-Production: Jan Jaap Kuiper, Amator
Pre Production: Jasper Boon, [Boondocs]
Executive Producer: Mevrouw de Advocaat
Production: Sebastian Mulder
Trailer Editor: Rens Christiaansen
Poster Design: Peter van Langen


IDFA – International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam
Best Youth Documentary 9-12 Award

Go Short– International short Film Festival Nijmegen

Let’s Doc Film Festival
Lynx Award for best Youth Documentary 10+

Zagreb Dox

Short Cutz Amsterdam

Leiden Shorts
Europe on Screen Festival 

FEST New Directors I New Films