Podcast Episode 14: Kyle Hester on Indie Filmmaking and His Upcoming Horror-Action Movie Preacher Six!

Many indie horror fans are already familiar with Kyle Hester thanks to last year’s Zombie with a Shotgun… Now, Kyle Hester joins Lauren Spear on the HorrorFam.com Podcast to chat about his upcoming horror-action film Preacher Six!

Kyle also gave Lauren a SCOOP: Breaking news about his role in another, previously unmentioned, upcoming psychological horror film!

If you enjoyed this episode, please share it with your friends! And, if you love the HorrorFam.com Podcast and want to support it, please consider donating via PayPal (button in the sidebar) or our Patreon at Patreon.com/HorrorFam. ♥

LINKS for MORE Kyle Hester:

LINKS for MORE Preacher Six:

FULL Written Transcript (with Pics!):

*Intro music from FreePD.com*

Lauren Spear: Hi, Everyone! My name is Lauren Spear and you’re listening to the HorrorFam.com Podcast!

My guest today is Kyle Hester! You may know him from last year’s Zombie with a Shotgun… But, today, he’s here to talk about his upcoming film Preacher Six.

Welcome to the show, Kyle! How’re you doing?

Kyle Hester: You know what? I’m doing fantastic! And, first of all, just thank you so much for having me on the show. I really appreciate it. We’re all one big family and have to support each other in this crazy time.

Lauren: Yes, indeed! *giggles*

And… Preacher Six! Wow! So, it’s been described as “Taxi Driver meets Sin City meets The Prophecy.” And I love The Prophecy.

And, genre-wise, it’s been described as being horror-action… And then it has some “grindhouse” elements? All that sounds great! And the trailer looks exciting and…

Kyle Hester: Thank you so much! Yeah! You know what? I think, if anybody wants to check out the trailer for Preacher Six, you can go to YouTube and just look up “Preacher Six.” Just spell it out — S-I-X — Preacher Six.

And we have… We have a few trailers up there. So, I would just…

You can kind of see the evolution of where it started, through the fundraising, and through, like, preliminary ideas that we were having as we were going into fundraising… All the way through the last one that we had.

And we’re actually working on a kind of like… *chuckles* A trailer with all the footage from the film now! So, we should have that up here soon.

So, like, we’re in the throughs of editing and VFX. And because we’re not, you know, Spielberg or Disney with lots of people to do these things, we’re just grinding it out and trying to get it done.

Carmen Argenziano (Father Gabe) and Kyle Hester (Father Joshua) going over Preacher Six's script, behind-the-scenes.
Carmen Argenziano (Father Gabe) and Kyle Hester (Father Joshua) going over Preacher Six‘s script, behind-the-scenes.

Lauren: Wow! Okay. Yeah. There’s a lot to touch upon there…

I guess the first thing would be the fundraising. You made [Preacher Six] via funds from a GoFundMe, correct?

Kyle Hester: We had all kinds of fundraisers! We did a lot of Indiegogo — that’s primarily what we did. And we did have some GoFundMes for various times and stuff.

And I have a Patreon — which is actually how we’re finishing [the movie] right now. So, you can kinda see developments from [Preacher Six] if you go to my Patreon… Which is “KyleHesterActorGuy.” So, if you go on Patreon, just look up “KyleHesterActorGuy” and for THREE BUCKS you can help us finish this film!

Lauren: *giggles*

Kyle Hester: But, yeah! So, it’s been basically anything and everything!

Like, we have an Etsy shop! So, from selling t-shirts to… You name it!

No big Hollywood funding. So, we just had to do whatever we needed to do. And we’re still doing [whatever we gotta do]! But, we’re getting it done.

Lauren: Yeah! It sure seems like it!

You contacted me, I guess… *thinking noise* Maybe in… December? Of last year? And you were still getting funds together and working on it.

And, now, you’re in post production, right?

Kyle Hester: Yeah! Yeah. We are in post! So…

And post production… For people who aren’t familiar with filmmaking: Post production is kind of where most of the work happens.

Eh. You know what? I’m… No. Let me take that back. I’d say it’s about 50/50! Because it’s like…

Between fundraising and actually making the stuff and building the sets and the script and actually filming it with all the actors and whatnot… I would say that’s… *thinking noise* Jeez. That’s a hard one. About 60 percent?

So, post production is like 40 percent! But, it’s equally as much work to finish a film once it’s been shot as it is to get it going in the first place.

Lauren: Yeah. For sure.

Did you have any problems with the pandemic getting in the way of making the movie in any sense? Or did you guys kind of luck out…?

In the Before Times, the cast + crew of Preacher Six posed for a happy pic!
In the Before Times, the cast + crew of Preacher Six posed for a happy pic!

Kyle Hester: No. No. Thankfully, [filming Preacher Six] was pre-COVID.

Now, we wouldn’t be able to do it! I mean… Hollywood is pretty much shutdown right now. So, if you were trying to do an independant film right now, there’s almost no way that you could film anything.

Regular, like, TV shows and what not… They’re having to test everybody — like all the cast and crew — once a week just to shoot. So, along with having all the protocols of keeping people separated and all that kind of stuff it’s…

And because acting is a, you know, up-close-and-personal kinda thing. It’s like… You can’t really social distance AND make a movie!

Lauren: Yeah.

Kyle Hester: It definitely would not be possible right now. So, I’m really really lucky that we had already shot [Preacher Six] before this all started.

Lauren: Oh my goodness! Yes!

Though, speaking of acting: In Zombie with a Shotgun, you had a role in that. And you were kind of like the Boba Fett of that movie where… You were like the super-cool bounty hunter, but *laughs* you weren’t there enough to satisfy everyone.

But it looks like you have a much bigger role in Preacher Six! So, we’ll get to see more of you and your skills…?

Kyle Hester: Well, I appreciate that! I think that is probably the best compliment I’ve EVER had! To be compared to Boba Fett? I will take that every day of the week!

Lauren: *laughs*

Kyle Hester: So, thank you for that!

But, yeah! Zombie with a Shotgun was awesome! If you haven’t seen it, you can see it on Tubi — for free there — or, if you have Amazon Prime, you can see it on Prime.

But yeah. It was… That was awesome. And we are going to be doing a sequel to that.

I’ve been talking to Hilton [Ariel Ruiz, Zombie with a Shotgun‘s creator] and Hank Ray — which is my character; the bounty hunter — WILL come back and be more of a central element!

Lauren: Yeah. I don’t want to give any spoilers, but the first movie is sort of an origin story. Not just for the main zombie with the shotgun, but also for your character. And there definitely was set-up there for a sequel so… That’s cool that you guys are doing another one.

Kyle Hester: Yeah! It’s… It’s in the planning phase. So we just gotta weather this storm and make it happen!

Lauren: That’s great!

And, for Preacher Six, the script was written by your wife, yes?

Kyle Hester: That is correct! Yeah!

Lauren: That’s so cool!

Kyle Hester: It’s awesome! She was the brains behind the operation!

Preacher Six is kind of like a complicated tale of a reluctant hero. So, there’s a lot going on!

When we were developing [the script], I was talking to her and she was saying, “You know how Quentin Tarantino… Like, he has things going on that have nothing to do with the film, but it all makes sense just because of the way the script’s written? I’m gonna do that!” So I was like, “Well, all right! Let’s do that!” Y’know?

Lauren: *chuckles*

Kyle Hester: Yeah, it’s… I’m excited about that! [For Preacher Six] to be finished and to be seen.

But, like, independent film! It’s just… It’s all part of the process. I mean, it took… Let’s see… Three years from shooting Zombie with a Shotgun to getting it out? And it’s been about two years since we filmed principal photography for Preacher Six

So, as far as, like, you know, “independent film time”: We are on schedule!

Kyle Hester, getting ready for some horror-action in the "weapons room," behind-the-scenes of Preacher Six!
Kyle Hester, getting ready for some horror-action in the “weapons room,” behind-the-scenes of Preacher Six!

Lauren: *laughs* Wow… yeah!

And it’s really cool that it’s like sort of… It really is very “grassroots.” Your wife wrote it, you’re acting in it, and then it was funded by your fans, and…

This is independent film, right here! *laughs*

Kyle Hester: No, you’re absolutely right! I mean, this is… This is how it happens and will happen!

I mean, it’s like, without… Without social media? Social media has definitely changed the ability for films to get made in this time. Because it’s like you have a connection to fans and a connection to, you know, people who like a particular thing.

So, if what you’re doing is a horror film, it’s easy to connect with the people who like horror stuff! Because it’s all right there.

So, yeah. I’m super grateful for the ability to do that. Y’know? ‘Cause before it all came out, I was wondering like, “How do people get a movie made? Or for anybody to know about it once it is made?”

It’s definitely a new time. And I’m just excited to be a part of it!

Lauren: *chuckles*

Kyle Hester: I don’t know if… Have you seen…? I did a horror film before… And I’m not putting you on the spot here!

Lauren: *nervous chuckle*

Kyle Hester: But, before Zombie with a Shotgun, I did a film called The Chair with Roddy Piper. And that was based on a comic book — or a graphic novel — and that was the same thing. It was all crowdfunded. And, like, a bunch of awesome people came together to make this gritty little super horror film!

So, if you like dark psychological horror, then you’ll dig The Chair! But it is super dark, even if you like horror. But, I figure, since this is HorrorFam[.com], there are gonna be some people who’d wanna see that!

screenshot of Kyle Hester in The Chair
Kyle Hester in The Chair.

Lauren: Yeah! I would hope that people listening to the HorrorFam.com Podcast like horror movies!

Both: *laugh*

Kyle Hester: It kind of makes sense!

Lauren: It would!

Kyle Hester: So check it out! Roddy Piper was amazing in it!

Lauren: If not, I’m not marketing this right! *laughs*

Kyle Hester: That’s funny! *laughs* Yeah!

Yeah… So, Roddy Piper was amazing. And Zach Galligan was in it and…

Lauren: And Zach Galligan is in Preacher Six as well! Zach Galligan from Gremlins and Naomi Grossman from American Horror Story… You’ve got some names on the cast list that horror fans will recognize!

Promo pic of Zach Galligan (Gremlins, Waxwork, etc.) in Preacher Six!
Promo pic of Zach Galligan (Gremlins, Waxwork, etc.) in Preacher Six!
Promo pic of Zach Galligan (Gremlins, Waxwork, etc.) in Preacher Six!
Naomi Grossman, Tomas Boykin, David Banks, and Ezra Buzzington also star in Preacher Six!
Preacher Six also stars Lawrence Chau, Mary LeGault, Jeremy Fultz, and MORE beloved actors! Check out the full cast list for more details.
Preacher Six also stars Lawrence Chau, Mary LeGault, Jeremy Fultz, and MORE beloved actors! Check out the full cast list for more details.

Kyle Hester: Yeah! Definitely! Definitely.

Peter Murnik from JAG… Yeah. He’s…

I met Peter Murnik on the set of Andersonville which was a film by John Frankenheimer — a civil war film. And, basically, what I did through my acting career was, like… I kept a mental Rolodex! Just like, “If I ever have an opportunity to work with these people…” You know, work with people I’ve worked with before… “Who is the BEST?” Y’know?

So, I think I’ve just had that [Rolodex] — those people — in my head! And so, when we started to… When the idea to do Preacher Six came out, it was like, “Okay. Here’s the chance to do that!”

So I just asked my friends and people that I respected and had worked with before if they wanted to be a part of it and… So that’s really how the cast came together!

Peter Murnik (Father Dan) and Kyle Hester (Father Joshua) behind-the-scenes of Preacher Six, dressed as preachers.
Peter Murnik (Father Dan) and Kyle Hester (Father Joshua) behind-the-scenes.

Lauren: That’s awesome! *giggles*

Oh! And one of the things that you mentioned way back [when you contacted me last year] was that you were trying to make your films very “green.” With, like, solar-powered generators and whatnot?

Were you able to achieve that, or is that still a goal for the future?

Kyle Hester: That is a goal for the future! I actually came up with that idea after we shot Preacher Six. Because they had all this… All these solar generators, basically.

It’s not an actual generator — like a gas generator — but it’s like a… It’s a battery bank that’s powered by solar panels! You know? Like a Tesla wall? You know? How they… It’s like a big battery!

I thought this was really sweet! Snagged a screenshot of a Tweet Kyle made in Nov. 2019 of him fully appreciating the “little” things — made possible by his fans — that truly impact his work behind-the-scenes!

Lauren: Yeah.

Kyle Hester: So, what they do, with these solar generators… Basically, you fill up the battery [with the power of the sun] and you can run your show on it! Y’know?

So that is the goal of it! So, that’s what I’ve been trying to raise money for through the Patreon. See if we can’t get some solar panels and get the solar generators and stuff like that. So, I think I’m gonna do…

I’m gonna do a one-man psychological horror film called The Magician. I’m gonna do it as a… It’s gonna be kind of like an avant-garde piece, y’know? I’m gonna shoot it all with GoPro [cameras] and do some cool stuff! And I wanna get the solar panel stuff in order to do that. So it can be, like, the first “proof of concept” that you CAN do something with solar power! So, that’s the goal there. And I…

Actually, you’re the first person to hear about it! I haven’t Tweeted about it. I haven’t said anything about it. So, YOU get a breaking story right now!

Lauren: OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOH!

I make quote cards to promote every episode of the HorrorFam.com Podcast and share them as “sneak peeks” for upcoming interviews on Twitter and Instagram. I was very excited to get a SCOOP! ♥

Both: *laugh*

Lauren: That’s awesome!

Kyle Hester: Yeah!

Lauren: Wow!

Kyle Hester: Yeah! So, that’s going to be fun! I’m excited about that.

Lauren: And you said it’s called The Magician?

Kyle Hester: Yeah. The Magician. It’s kind of like the journey into the mind of a madman who thinks he’s the world’s greatest magician.

Lauren: Hmm!

Kyle Hester: So, yeah! We will see! We will see how deep that rabbit hole goes…

Lauren: Do you do any magic, like, on the side? When you’re not acting, or…?

Kyle Hester: You know, it’s funny… My grandmother gave me one of those little, like, magician cup-and-ball things and it had, like, the cards with the string on it and all that stuff when I was SUPER young. When I was a little kid. And, so, I always had a fascination with [magic]!

But I never really took it on as a hobby. But, I’ll definitely be getting back into it for the film!

Lauren: *chuckles* Ah… Well! Now you can! You finally have an excuse to go for it!

Kyle Hester: That’s right! I’m looking forward to it.

Lauren: But, going back to Preacher Six: Do you have a release date yet? Or is that still kind of up-in-the-air because things are so weird right now? Or…?

Kyle Hester: Yeah… No release date as of yet.

We’re, like, still in Post Production Land of it. So, basically, I’m supposed to get a cut of the film here soon that I can talk over with the director and give notes and change some things and do what you do during post…

And then it goes into Sound — for sound mixing and the composer — and Color Correction… So there’s a lot of steps to it. So, we’re just kinda like in those steps right now. So…

I wish I did have a date! But, we’re just taking the steps as they come.

Naomi Grossman hanging out on set with Preacher Six director Grady Earls.
Naomi Grossman hanging out on set with Preacher Six director Grady Earls.

Lauren: And you’re a producer and the lead actor in [Preacher Six], is that…? Were those your “only” roles in it, or am I missing something…?

Kyle Hester: No! *chuckles* Thankfully! That… That’s enough!

Both: *laugh*

Kyle Hester: Those are my roles!

So, basically, what falls on the Producer is… Kind of… Everything.

So, the Producer is responsible for who’s hired and who the people are that come onto the set and who makes everything and does everything. And the lighting and the camera and who the director is. And, like… All of it.

So, it’s like you have all of the production heads asking questions, and then the actors acting questions, and… So it’s… It’s a LOT to do!

Lauren: Yeah.

Kyle Hester: But… Yeah! But, hey, y’know? That’s what I signed up for! So, we’re just on that road. Yeah!

So, that’s what a Producer does — for those who don’t know what a Producer actually does.

Now, there are people who get a credit of “Producer” and they don’t do anything…

Lauren: *chuckles*

Kyle Hester: So, like, if you pay money, you can get a “Producer” credit? Y’know? Like if you’re an investor, you can get a “Producer” credit sometimes…

But, if it’s actually, like, a person who produces — a hands-on Producer — it’s a LOT.

Lauren: Yeah… I think a lot of people hear “Producer” and they think, “Oh, that’s just the person who gave money to the production!” *laughs*

Kyle Hester: Right! Right. So, yeah… That’s actually why I try to put out what it actually means. Because of the crowdfunding thing, that title gets thrown around a lot. Or given away a lot.

So, I think as people… If there are filmmakers listening to this: I would just maybe try to take a little bit of that back? Maybe, like, give different KINDS of “Producer” credits? Like “Funding Producer” and “Associate Producer” and that kind of thing. But if you are the Producer of it — like actually making a film happen — that should be YOUR title!

Lauren: Yeah.

Kyle Hester: Y’know? Yeah! That’s what I think about that!

Lauren: Yeah! The roles… The things that used to be just in the “Special Thanks” credits are now being put as “Producer” and it’s all gotten kind of muddled.

Kyle Hester: Right! Agreed! Agreed.

And, yeah! That’s just like… You know. People trying to get…

I mean, I don’t blame people for doing that. Because everybody wants to have something for what they’re giving. You know? So, if someone’s giving 250 bucks or whatever to help the film get made… Then what is it that’s worth 250 dollars for that person to “do”? And if they think that, “Well, I need to get some kind of Producer credit for that!” Then the person that NEEDS the 250 dollars is gonna go, “Hmmmmmmm… Okay? We’ll do that.” You know?

Lauren: Yeah.

Kyle Hester: So that’s how that happens! People just want to get something done! And so… That’s how things get kind of muddy about what things actually mean.

Lauren: Yeah…

Well, as the Producer and lead actor in Preacher Six, did you have anything else that you wanted to say about the movie? I don’t want you to give away spoilers or anything… But is there anything you CAN say about the movie that will get people excited and tell them a LITTLE bit more?

Kyle Hester, Producer + Star of Preacher Six
Kyle Hester, Producer + Star of Preacher Six

Kyle Hester: Yeah! Yeah! Preacher Six it’s a… Lemme tell you what it’s kind of about!

It’s about a small-town preacher who goes to the Big City and ends up fighting demons in a literal sense. So, there’s lots of action and demon killing and whatnot!

So, definitely get on board and go to @PreacherSix on Twitter to follow the account and… Yeah! You can see more things about it and you can check out the cast on…

We have a website! It’s PreacherSix.com!

So, basically, if you look up “Preacher Six,” with the words, on Google… All that stuff is gonna come up!

Lauren: And that’s “Six” spelled out S-I-X.

Kyle Hester: Yeah! I’m super excited.

Lauren: Yeah! It looks like it’s going to be really cool!

Like, obviously, the trailers that are out now aren’t reflective of what it will be when it’s completely ready! But, what you have up now is like, “Oh! Wow! That’s a lot of action!” And it’s got some really neat-lookin’ demons in it!

Kyle Hester: Well, thank you so much! I can’t wait for you to see what’s coming NEXT!

Lauren: *laughs* Well, I’m already following the accounts! So, I’ll be able to see that!

Kyle Hester: Very cool. Very cool.

Yeah! I mean… You know what? With what you’re doing now with the podcast and your website and everything… I mean, this truly does touch to the real fans of independent film and horror and all that. So thank YOU for what you are doing to help spread the news about these independent films and independent artists… Especially in these times!

So, thank you for what you’re doing!

Lauren: Oh! Well… *giggles* Thank you very much! I just…

I figured that the really big movies already get attention. So, I wanted to focus the show on creators who are smaller who might otherwise be overlooked… You know? *flustered laugh*

Kyle Hester: Well, I appreciate that a lot!

Lauren: Well, I appreciate you coming on!

Kyle Hester: And check out Zombie with a Shotgun and The Chair on Tubi or Amazon! And… And leave a comment! Leave like a… You know. Put something positive out there about these films in the comments’ section. That would be freakin’ awesome.

Lauren: Oh! And, for anyone who wants to follow YOU! You also have accounts that they can follow, yes?

Kyle Hester: I do! You can follow me on Twitter! It’s @KyleDHester. So that’s “Kyle” the letter “D” as in David (which IS my middle name!) “Hester” — KyleDHester.

And… yeah! I’m on [Twitter] every day! And, if you want to DM, I do answer questions and it is me. So, yeah. I appreciate that!

Lauren: All right! Well, is there anything else that you wanted to say…?

Kyle Hester: I think… I think I’m good! Except for: Thank you for having me on! You’ve been awesome!

Lauren: Okay! *giggles* Well, thank you very much, Kyle! And thank you everyone for listening!

That was Kyle Hester! Bye for now!

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Images other than the featured image via Kyle Hester (unless otherwise cited).

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