“...to make the last thing perfect”
A feature documentary about the life and times of Tomata du Plenty
David Xavier Harrigan, AKA Tomata du Plenty, is one of the most influential artists you've never heard of. Born on Coney Island to Irish immigrant parents, he soon made a move westward. The 60’s brought him to San Francisco to join the glitter drag troupe, The Cockettes; then to Seattle to form the self-described “gender-f**k” theater group Ze Whiz Kidz.
Tomata led the Kidz to New York, where he met his proto-punk peers from the CBGB scene mixing with the Ramones, the Mumps, New York Dolls and the Stilletos. 1975 came and Tomata returned to Seattle to form the Tupperwares, one third of the TMT trio that ushered in Seattle’s version of the late 70’s punk scene. Shortly after, Tomata relocated to Los Angeles where The Tupperwares became The Screamers. The band would set the Hollywood scene a light with their guitar-less synth-punk sound, selling out the Whiskey and the Roxy led by Tomata’s electric performances. They became one of the most famous bands to never record a proper record.
In the 80’s, Tomata embarked on a new career as a folk painter, painting vibrant portraits of “of his favorite artists and other plain folks” exhibited in storefront galleries from Miami to San Francisco.
The goal is to bring Tomata’s untold story to life. We’ve already begun shooting footage of the cast of characters essential to Tomata’s story. As the research continues, we’ve realized what a challenging road lies ahead. This project will be one part detective case and one part treasure hunt. We will most likely need to travel to the various cities where Tomata left his artistic footprint, seek out the players, and find the stories. The people we have met with so far have been generous of time and heart. The interactions have felt somewhat symbiotic in our mutual desire to commemorate his spirit and legacy.
What the funds are for
Initial production costs for the documentary: film, travel expenses…
A retrospective multimedia exhibition of Tomata’s work. Two shows are already scheduled in Los Angeles https://www.facebook.com/events/760699953945030/?ref_dashboard_filter=upcoming
These shows will be filmed for the documentary, including group interview sessions.
Who we are
the remainder Is productions has assembled a small team based out of San Diego. Our team comes from a variety of backgrounds and disciplines and includes a musician, a filmmaker, a designer, a painter and a candlestick maker. Most of us double as bartenders, when not hard at work on this project.
the remainder Is productions would like to give a heartfelt thank you to the following for their contributions thus far:
Nancy Taylor, Trudie Barrett, Hellin Killer, Paul Roessler, Kristian Hoffman, John Fleck, John Roecker, Mario Edgar Martinez, Terry Ellsworth, Mike Hoffman, Tequila Mockingbird, Geza X, Don Bolles, Cheyanne Sauter, Art Share Los Angeles, Sheryl Garcia, Marc Garcia, Lisa Derrick, Lisa Fancher, Styles Caldwell, Tex Troester, Ruby Ray, Jenny Lens, Bobby Grossman, Bruce Osborn, Gary Panter, Doug Knott, Douglas Cavanaugh, Larry Bob Roberts, Stevo Pavkovic, Jack Rabid, Helen Clarke, Hope Urban, Chuck Fulton, Mark Simon, Jim Cherry, Art Chantry
Risks and challenges
The biggest challenge is piecing together a story whose cast of characters is scattered and sometimes elusive.
Periods in Tomata’s life are barely documented, much like The Screamers, buried in the underground L.A. punk scene.
Footage and resources are scarce and come at a premium. Time is also of the essence as the memories and stories of such a vibrant period begin to fade…
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- (15 days)