Interview With Actor/Producer Kyle Hester, “Preacher Six”

By Ruth on March 16, 2017 in Interview, movie, television
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Last year, I procured an interview that substantially altered my outlook on TV and films. Until I spoke with Kyle Hester, I was utterly clueless about independent films or crowdfunding–I didn’t even know the term “indie film.” As far as I was concerned, Hollywood made the films, and I paid the money to go see them, and they earned the “big bucks.” In spite of knowing virtually nothing about Kyle, I contacted him for an interview. He agreed, and seriously, the rest is history. As a result of his kindness in educating me in the ways of indie film, I am now a champion for these sometimes neglected but rapidly expanding movies. Recently, I spoke with Kyle again as he is attempting to fund one of his most ambitious projects yet–Preacher Six. But because Kyle is who is he is, he’s doing a heckuva lot more than just one project!

RH: It is so great to talk with you again, Kyle.

KH: Same here.

I really enjoy you and your wife, Tracy {Ray}. Actually, I find that I talk about you a lot, especially when I’m talking to independent filmmakers because I see you as the one who got me switched onto indie films last year.

Oh, cool. Good, right on. I’m glad of that.

I am so glad we connected, and it has been something to see the journey that you’ve been on. In fact, I recently interviewed one of the actors from The Chair. Bill Oberst, Jr.

Oh, you did? He’s awesome! You know, he’s gonna be in Preacher Six.  I can’t tell you much about the role, but let’s just say it’s going to be an amazing role. A very complex role. And that’s all I’ll say right now. It is the kind of intense and awesome character he loves to play.

Oh, that’s sounds exciting. And you know, I think it was because of The Chair that I first noticed him. I’m looking forward to The Chair and Preacher Six even more so now.

It’s a small world, as you know.

The Chair is coming out later on this year, right?

Yes, the DVD/Blu-Ray combo pack is scheduled to be released in October of this year. Before then, it’s gonna be in festivals, so the announcements will be made as to where you can see it. The DVD will come out first, and then some time after that, it will be available on all the streaming services. It is pretty intense.

Oh, I know it’s intense. It wouldn’t be the typical genre I would watch.

Me neither. But for what it is, I think it’s a really good film.

Now, Zombie With a Shotgun. What is the status of that film? Did you guys finish filming it completely?

I would say as far as I know, it’s like ninety percent finished filming. I know Hilton {Ruiz} wants to add a little something special to it. I don’t know how far along in that process he is, but yes, it’s mostly filmed.

Hilton still has the Go Fund Me Page for Zombie With a Shotgun, right?

Yes, that is right.

Does he have any idea when that will be finished?

I think it depends somewhat on the funds and the schedule of the actors involved.

It seemed like you guys had a blast filming that.

Oh yeah, it was a whirlwind ten days in Manhattan. It was good times. It was ninety-seven degrees in the basement where we were for three days. I think I got a little dehydrated. I don’t think I’d ever been that close to heatstroke. {laughs} It was so hot for so long. It was crazy, but we all made it.

Well, that’s the most important thing, right? That’s what so cool about independent films. You have those kinds of stories as opposed to what you hear from a Hollywood studio. Sometimes the stories I hear from filming in a traditional studio are not that exciting. But indie films always have those interesting stories to tell. 

Oh yeah, for sure.

So onto Preacher Six. You ended the indiegogo campaign, and you’ve now launched the Go Fund Me page.

Yes, I think we raised about ten grand on the indiegogo campaign. And when all’s said and done, between investors and the two fundraising campaigns, we’ve raised like 150,000 dollars. So we’re steadily climbing towards our goal, but we still have a ways to go. So this is what we’re going to be doing until the sucker’s done. I will be annoying you and irritating you until the money is raised. You’ll probably get tired of seeing Preacher Six in your twitter feed, but until it gets done, this is what we’ve gotta do.

That’s what you have to do with indie films. And I admire that because we know from experience that there are enough indie film projects where they get the campaign going, and then they say, “Okay, we didn’t raise enough,” or “We raised enough, but now we’re not gonna do it.” 

Well, you know, making and completing an indie film is no small task. Sometimes people don’t really know what they’re getting into. Unless they have big backing, it’s like its own job to raise these funds. I’m going to be opening an ebay site and etsy shop…basically wherever we can get income streams to make it happen, that’s what we’re gonna be doing. It’s multi-pronged “let’s get money in the account so we can do this movie.” Those things will be launching out as we go along here. Tracy plans to auction her paintings off too.

Oh wow, and she is so incredibly talented. Every time I see those paintings, I’m amazed. 

And she’s been working on horsemanship coats. Before all this, she was a designer. She’s like Shakespeare. She can do anything. I might even do some carpentry and sell something that way.

You guys have the right mindset and the experience. You’re willing to do whatever is necessary to keep it going, and I know it can be discouraging, but you don’t give up.

You never know what the psychological hook is to get someone to go, “Oh, okay, I’ll pitch in.”  Whether it’s “Hey, be part of the magic.” Or “Who’s gonna be the first person to give today?” I try to keep it positive. I don’t want to get too negative. Some mornings I get up and think, “Oh no, we only got thirty dollars today.” But I don’t tweet that out. And then someone might come on and become a funding producer or something. I just have to remain positive. I have to keep doing what I’m doing every day. I need to stay active and remain calm. The only way it’s not gonna happen is if I quit.

I try to put out a tweet about once an hour. I try not to put it out more than that. I don’t want to bombard someone’s twitter feed. But it’s like a radio station. People aren’t on the same time. Someone may not see this at night unless they live on twitter like me. {laughs} But the funny thing is I really don’t get a chance to look at my feed. I’m the DJ putting things out, and when people contact me or mention me, then I’ll go see it. But I don’t really see my feed because I don’t have time.

Same here.

Until that ship of gold comes my way, I’m going to be doing these campaign fundraisers for my films. But if I do get rich, I’ll finance the films myself. I’d still be active on twitter and in indie film, but I wouldn’t have to do fundraisers any more. I’m in contact with the coast guard and hopefully they’re going to flag down a ship of gold for me and bring it into port. {laughs} But until that time, I hope that people will join with me to support indie films. If you’re tired of the same old stories coming out of the studios, check out our campaign. I can hardly wait to meet our goal and get filming!

One cannot be in the presence of Kyle Hester long before he/she realizes that Kyle’s driving passion is independent film. While the studios do occasionally put out a genuinely decent movie, it is actually becoming more “fashionable” to produce indie films. If you do the research, you may find that some of the films you have enjoyed in recent years in the theater began as a simple indie film that was eventually picked up by a regular studio and released; that happens more than one may realize. Notwithstanding, in most of those cases, unless complete creative control is retained, it may change from its original concept and become “Hollywoodized.” In Kyle’s case, he is attempting to completely buck the system and produce indie films through fundraising, apart from the interference of the studios. This kind of undertaking is more difficult than you might imagine, and unless you are able to acquire the services of a Hollywood A-lister (who probably will place an innumerable amount of regulations on the film, and the filmmaker may make compromises which ultimately change the film either for better or for worse). 

Sometimes indie filmmakers and supporters become withdrawn, overwrought, and possibly even a bit self-centered. And I would say that is understandable due to the demands of this genre. However, Kyle has remained as benevolent, humble, and “normal” as anyone else in this world. He has given me plenty of advice that has helped me to grow as a blogger, and while I may not have overnight success (which is a myth, by the way), his advice is solid and pragmatic. Kyle is probably more persistent than I, and I salute him for his unswerving allegiance to his various projects. I tend to think that his wife, Tracy, keeps him level-headed as well since they work together (she is usually in the background–writing the scripts, creating fantastic artwork, and encouraging him and others, including me, in every way she can). Together, Kyle and Tracy make an indomitable team, and I have no doubt that whatever the future holds for them, they will accomplish it due to their skill, tenacity, and devotion to indie film. I invite all of my readers to check out Kyle at the various links below. And if you can find it in your heart, consider donating towards his project Preacher Six, or if you are unable to do that, please at least share the campaign on social media. Oh, and by the way, if anyone knows of a ship of gold that is off the coast of California, please see if you can steer it Kyle’s way as he is one of the most deserving people I know!

FOLLOW KYLE

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IMDB

SUPPORT PREACHER SIX

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About the Author

RuthView all posts by Ruth
42-year-old single mother of an active 13-year-old girl Born in Tacoma, WA; lives in Yelm, WA Entertainment Writer Available For Interviews and Reviews Substitute Teacher

4 Comments

  1. Bill Oberst Jr. March 17, 2017 Reply

    Ruth,

    Thank you for this conversation with Kyle Hester. He’s a good man – I’ve had the pleasure of working with him and have seen his decency and kindness to others exhibited on set (traits that are not always present on a tense film set.) It’s good to see him featured here.

    very best to you,
    Bill

    • Author
      Ruth March 17, 2017 Reply

      Bill what a pleasant surprise to see this amazing comment. Always nice to have what I believe about someone I’ve interviewed confirmed by someone who knows him and has worked with him!

  2. Mary Anagnostopoulos March 17, 2017 Reply

    Omg! Just an amazing interview Ruth. Absolutely love both Kyle and Tracy so looking forward to seeing All of these movies 🎥

    • Author
      Ruth March 17, 2017 Reply

      Mary you are such incredible support. Thank you!

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