On Dec. 2, gun-control group Sandy Hook Promise released a shocking PSA titled “Evan,” created by ad agency BBDO. It tells a heartwarming story of young love—until a deranged murderer enters the school building. Clever framing and editing shows how the warning signs of impending disaster were missed, but there is another problem:
“Evan” appears to be the result of plagiarism.
Filmmaker Albert Gonzalez says “Evan” steals its charm from his 2011 short film, “The Desk.” The claim certainly has merit; His portrayal of young students exchanging messages by writing on a mysterious school desk is shamelessly mimicked in “Evan.” In addition, certain scenes, sequences and camera angles are copied nearly frame-by-frame. Claiming coincidence will be difficult; to date, “The Desk” has nearly 2 million views.