The Evil I’ve Seen | Western Short Film | Simi Valley, CA

The Evil I’ve Seen is a foreboding tale in 1866 Kansas about a priest and the shady characters he meets fireside on a desert trail – a gold-seeker, a gambler, and a cattle driver. True motives and identities reveal themselves as the men raise conversation, whiskey and guns over the blazing fire.

It would be noble to make up with a socially conscious reason this film was made, but full disclosure: this film is the product of four friends who go to Vegas all the time wanting to do a project together. I’m sure many big-time projects birthed themselves on that four hour (the way we drive) trip from L.A. to Vegas. I’m proud to say, however, that for four goofs looking for more reasons to hang out, we shot pretty high – all nighttime shoot, period piece and roaming smoke to contend with.

In the short time you’ll spend with Julian, Alton, Slawt and Eli around an 1800s campfire in Kansas, a lot gets revealed, and a lot goes on. You’ll get what I like seeing best in movies: complicated relationships and secrets.

Further proof that we make the most out of our drives to Vegas (and that we go often), this creative team previously made a horror film called OH THE EFFING HORROR (meant to be shouted), a short that was accepted into twenty-seven festivals and won ten awards. David Herbelin plays Julian, the preacher and is joined by Justin Bowler, Ryan Paregien and myself, Paul Preston. The four of us teamed up on the script and produced the film.

You don’t have to twist my arm to see the newest western that comes to theaters, but it seems to be not until I sit down in front of it do I think to myself, “Oh yeah, I LOVE westerns!”. I’m proud to bring you, along with Justin, Dave and Ryan, a unique, pared-down, one-location mystery of sorts with high stakes that’ll hopefully have you saying, “Oh yeah, I LOVE westerns!”

– Paul Preston, director


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