...or is it?
Of course not!
Calistra became the
toast of the L.A. alternative and underground art & music
scene when she returned home from her visit to New York City.
She has appeared at art gallery openings, has been photographed by
artists of the lens both in studio and in the great outdoors; and
The Darling Taxiderm has been an honored and highly sought after guest
at numerous alternative music events for such fabulous performers
of "The Fontanelles."
...and Rachel Arieff,
that lovely impish triple threat combo of comedienne, singer and songwriter
most exciting appearance occurred at a late night extravaganza at
the famous Hollywood club The Knitting Factory hosted by notorious
rock 'n roll impresario KIM FOWLEY.
Backstage at The Knitting Factory,
Calistra gets her make up touched up by underground Hollywood celebrity
On August 16, 2002
Calistra turned legal. She became 18
years old and two months later wedding bells were ringing!
Endfield Zipper was engaged to marry Yasuaki Taniguchi, fantastic
exotic drummer for the rock band 3Way Popcorn.
that did not exactly happen, the wedding did take place Saturday,
October 26, 2002 at Club CIA (California Institute of the Abnormal
Arts) in North Hollywood, California.
THIS WAS A MIXED MARRIAGE:
BRIDEGROOM IS ALIVE)
The wedding invitation.
October 26, 2002 is a very
appropriate date for Calistra's wedding as it marks the 50th anniversary
of the passing of a Hollywood legend: HATTIE McDANIEL who although
she was unable to benefit from the services of the Humanistic Taxidermy
Society she did receive her Last Wish with a Memorial Unveiling
at HOLLYWOOD FOREVER CEMETERY on October 26, 1999.
The rock band "Exhibition" performing
at Calistra's wedding prior to the ceremony. Andee, in the white blouse,
black shorts and boots, became Calistra's surprise bridegroom when
Yasuaki declined to partake in the nuptials.
The lovely and forlorn bride-to-be
awaits a volunteer from the audience to marry her after the defection
of her dastardly fiancé Yasuaki Tanaguchi.
Potential brides: Beware
this man! If he proposes he MAY not marry you! Heed the example of
poor Calistra's lamentable experience!
Anthony Zipper and Carl Crew, owner of Club
CIA and "minister" to the wedding ceremony, plead for someone
-- anyone -- to marry Calistra.
Hallelujah! A groom at last! Andee Wilson
of the rock band Exhibition makes the supreme sacrifice and steps
up to marry Calistra! He even had a wedding ring!
(Now, even though
Mr. Wilson looks as though he'd make a fetching bride himself, he
wants everyone to know that he is definitely brideGROOM material.)
The radiant new bride just
prior to the honeymoon, rumored to have taken place in either Guanajuato,
Mexico to visit the famous mummies or to Paris, France for a tour
of (naturellement) the Catacombs.
In a blur of color and sound,
dynamic rock group 3WayPopcorn explodes at Club CIA to climax America's
first Taxidermied Wedding.
Special thanks to: David
Speck, Sean Niles, Darren Burgos, Jason Shapiro, Alexis Blasini, Toney
The Maef, Benai, Derek Brown, Jeffspace, "Rikki", Mark Alfa,
Michelle & Dionicio for helping to make Calistra's wedding come
FLASH: July 17, 2004:
older brother MARCO has been discovered -- alive!
Stay tuned for further
developments as this breaking story progresses....
January 1, 2006:
Calistra's erratic brother MARCO ZIPPER has vanished again. Filled
with conflict, he often yearns to join his sister in immortality,
yet remains fascinated with the many delights yet to be discovered
on this earthly plane. We can only wish him God-speed and good luck.
WHERE IS CALISTRA ZIPPER?
She has been missing since her honeymoon, poor thing. Her
bridegroom? Case of the Curious Vanishing. Her devoted father Anthony?
In torment, unseen for years. Her brother Marco? Emerged from hiding,
now on a revolutionary tirade. Yet Calistra's fate is still unknown.
Physicians of every stripe, psychics, men of the spirit, law enforcement
personnel, close relatives, all are baffled. The public demands answers!
Therefore, Hollywood, Beware: "THE CALISTRA ZIPPER STORY"
is now a reality. The umpteenth arrest of Ronald A. Dotson at the
beginning of 2007 started this all; that Detroit event became the
catalyst for action. This statuephilia-related event, combined with
the simultaneous unexpected appearance of Marco Zipper, who miraculously
and courageusly emerged from his self-imposed seclusion to offer his
complete cooperation, has made "THE CALISTRA ZIPPER STORY"
an inevitability. Cameras began rolling on February 3, 2007.
An arsenal of suspicious
characters have been interviewed:
NEIMAN DARK, Psychic
Extraordinaire, seeking clues by summoning forces in the nether regions
for answers as to the whereabouts of the spirit and bodily remains
of Calistra Zipper
Legendary star ALEXIS
DEL LAGO denies the rumors she had a torrid affair with Anthony Zipper
They call him Bubble
Bath Boi. He claims to be Calistra's only true love. They met in the
Hollywood Bus Station, became "close" that very night and
remained an item until Calistra's passing less than a year later.
Bubble Bath Boi's only happiness now comes when he shares a bubble
bath and a good smoke with his rubber duckies -- the last gifts given
to him by his beloved Calistra.
Dazzling club kids,
notorious "friends" of Calistra:
SHAM who shares a
deep dark extraterrestrial secret
CANDICE CASH who swears
her beloved familiar Mini is NOT taxidermied
Mortician U. Heap expounds
upon the virtues of plastination, a modern technology endorsed by
the Humanistic Taxidermy Society. Combining this method with human
preservation, a new word has been coined: "plastidermy."
Brother Abram gave brotherly
sanctuary to a distraught Anthony Zipper, haunted and hounded by an
uncaring, noncomprehending society.
Teitelbaum does NOT believe in Human Taxidermy and he demanded equal
time to share HIS vision of post-life attention. Here he reveals a
bottle of his precious invention which he calls "Infinity Gas."
Dr. T claims that his lighter than air expandable gas once injected
into the deceased who are then shot into outer space will preserve
said corpse into the indefinite future, by which time science will
have perfected the means of thawing out the body, curing whatever
ailments they had which caused their death, and return them to life!
Male Nurse Rio Rivers
is dubious about far-fetched notions of freezing bodies and sending
them into outer space. This practical down-to-earth hospital employee
attended to Calistra during her final days at the County Hospital
and developed a very strong bond with her. Too strong perhaps between
a medical professional and his patient? That's what Bubble Bath Boi
thinks. In any event, Nurse Rivers has serious concerns regarding
Calistra's untimely passing.
Delmar Watson, former
child actor, Hollywood historian and photojournalistic archivist who
has followed the Hollywood scene for seven decades plus, vividly recalls
the former legends of Tinsel Town. He also shares his pungent, uncensored
thoughts and feelings about Calistra, her father Anthony, her brother
Marco, the Hollywood Wax Museum, Pola Negri, Greta Garbo, Cecil B.
DeMille and the woman who still haunts his dreams -- Alexis Del Lago.
Here's a link to the
late Delmar Watson reminiscing about Calistra:
Robert Clements of the Arson Investigation Department reveals incriminating
evidence: a letter from possibly the culprit or culprits responsible
for the rash of fires sweeping the Los Angeles area in recent months,
the latest occurring right behind the world famous cemetery and which
threatened the iconic Hollywood sign. Could these firebugs really
have some relationship to Calistra Zipper?
Marco Zipper on the
streets of Hollywood espousing his cause.
Luke, Marco and Calistra's maternal grandparents, warned their daughter
Helen not to marry Anthony Zipper. Their outrage over the preservation
of their beloved granddaughter Calistra has now been compounded as
Grandpa McKissick shows his equally mortified spouse the flyer being
passed out by their only surving grandchild Marco advocating Human
Taxidermy. Francine and Luke, as a counter measure, have formed the
HSFPHT - the Hoboken Society For The Prevention Of Human Taxidermy.
This, of course, means intrafamilial WAR.
Dr. Omar Betraious, Psychiatrist-General
for the State Of California, announces the apprehension of the prime
arson suspect and warns the populous about the Humanistic Taxidermy
Society Of America.
Reverend Carl Crew
who officiated Calistra's wedding in 2002 is gravely concerned over
her disappearance. He has stated that he plans to present a special
"Statuephilia Night" at Club CIA in North Hollywood, California
to honor America's Number One Taxidermied Girl and her beleagured
family The Zippers. Stay tuned for further details.
ANTHONY AND MARCO MEET
AT THE HOLLYWOOD CEMETERY
Estranged father and
son's emotional encounter
Many more scintillating
personalities are on the way including shocking video of Marco Zipper's
or comments? Wish to invest in promotion/distribution?
Here is a link to
Humanistic Taxidermy Society Of America at:
UPDATE JUNE 15, 2007:
After more than four months of incredible adventure and creativity,
principal photography was completed this day on "THE CALISTRA
UPDATE JULY 30, 2007:
I took my first and virtually only digital editing lesson for this
project. (I had one Final Cut Pro class in 2003 but now I'm SERIOUS,
with my own equipment acquired this month.) Editing proper commenced
the following week. I utilized instruction books, watched You Tube
video lessons, experimented endlessly and obtained Brandon Kaplan's
expert advise in order to edit this project. A fantastic learning
experience for a guy who as a teen used to edit 8mm and Super 8 with
a little metal editing gizmo and cement. Where would I be now if I
had today's technology back then?
UPDATE AUGUST 2007:
Cemetery scene and Director's Commentary can be viewed on www.YouTube.com
under my YouTube moniker "ccvisions"
YOUTUBE LINKS FOR
"THE CALISTRA ZIPPER STORY"
You Tube is a great website
for all sorts of entertainment delights. I have been a member since
July 14, 2007. Click the link below to view clips from "THE CALISTRA
ZIPPER STORY" as editing progresses, as well as other clips I
upload from time to time, including a 2001 interview with yours truly,
my actors demo and new videos I am producing:
SHOCKING SAD NEWS
Michael DeGoes, 61, a
cultured gentleman who was a great inspiration to this project and
who provided invaluable advice, filming locations, props, moral support
and the means to acquire the computer for video editing, was found
in his bathtub lifeless on August 27th. Mr. DeGoes leaves behind numerous
friends and former students, as he was a Professor Of English at the
University in Northridge, California. It remains to be seen whether
or not he elected to become a client of the Humanistic Taxidermy Society
UPDATE DECEMBER 2007:
Additional filming as editing progresses.
UPDATE MARCH 2008:
Additional filming as editing progresses.
UPDATE APRIL 2008:
Rough cuts completed. Three versions created: 96 minutes, 82 minutes,
and 27 minute "mockumentary."
UPDATE MAY 3, 2008:
Final scene shot at Ron Borst's Hollywood Poster Shop concluding filming
that began one year and three months ago. Whew!
UPDATE JULY 16, 2008:
Editing of full length version for first public screening completed:
The first public screening
of "THE CALISTRA ZIPPER STORY" occurred on Monday, July
28th 2008 at The Bungalow Club in West Hollywood, CA. This swank bar
and eatery was perfectly divine and drew a happy crowd of friends
and fans. The screening took place in their large outdoor patio as
soon as night fell.
The Bungalow Club
Special Guest Star
Alexis Del Lago with her Director
Robert Clements as the Arson
Detective who spends the movie searching for Marco Zipper finally
catches up with him at the July 28th screening.
Maef and friends celebrate
Luke McKissack plays the rascally
Grandpa come to Hollywood to give his granddaughter a proper burial,
here with the lovely actress and muse Brenda.
Gary St. George plays the fantastic
Jews Harp prominent on "The Calistra Zipper Story" soundtrack
here with his wife Susan (mother of Jeffrey Space) and Aunt Margie.
Jeffrey Space (Taylor Maid),
Craig Calman (Anthony Zipper) and Maef (Marco Zipper)
Maef (Marco Zipper), Catherine
Anne Hayes (Francine Delvecchio McKissack), Daniel Dicriscio (hairstylist
to the stars) and Alexis Del Lago
Actress Eve Sigall joined in
on the festivities.
Actor/Producer Danny Pape and
his lovely lady friend graced us with their presence
Who plays Candice Cash???
Jeffrey Space with Jon Orovitz,
who traveled all the way from our nation's capital to see "The
Calistra Zipper Story"
The late English-born actor Michael
Raye (1945-2010) and his colorful guest who was unable to hold her
liquor, became most obnoxious to all and sundry and so therefore shall
Hollywood Artist "Sex
Artiste" was so inspired by "The Calistra Zipper Story"
that he created a special fan of Marco and Anthony Zipper. Now THAT'S
Anthony and Marco Zipper? No,
dagnabit, it's the REAL Craig Calman and Toney The Maef.
Now everyone is interested in
Calistra! Even Michael Musto of the Village Voice is
talking about her, as well as dishing the dirt on Alexis Del Lago
and introducing the world to Candice Cash:
2008: New improved 89 minute edit!
CALISTRA ZIPPER STORY" IS AN OFFICIAL ENTRY IN
ANNUAL ZERO FILM FESTIVAL:
Zero Film Festival
- 6, 2008
Alexis Del Lago enjoys Opening
Night at the Downtown Independent Theater with two of her fans.
A modestly attired Calistra awaits
the screening of her movie with her dear friend Jeffrey Space who
plays butler Taylor Maid in "The Calistra Zipper Story."
17, 2009: New improved 84 minute edit completed and 25 minute
mockumentary version "Who Is Calistra Zipper?" created.
February 5, 2009: "The Calistra
Zipper Story" receives the Purple
Heart Award from Zero Film Festival.
Update March 13, 2009:
A new edit at 85 minutes in anticipation of the March 27th screening
of "The Calistra Zipper Story" at Club CIA in North Hollywood,
the very place Calistra had her wedding back in 2002.
MARCH 27, 2009: CALISTRA
RETURNS TO CLUB CIA
Jeffrey (Taylor Maid)
Space returns to Club CIA.
The screening of "The
Calistra Zipper Story" in Club CIA's outdoor theater was a great
At the left is Craig
Elliott, my assistant cameraman who passed away unexpectedly March
5, 2011 while still in his forties. Giving the peace sign is his former
girlfriend singer-songwriter Carol MacArthur and to her left is the
incomparable Alexis Del Lago, guest star of "The Calistra Zipper
Toney the Maef (Marco
Zipper) flanked by two adoring fans.
A "Calistra Zipper"
CIA proprietor Carl
("Jeffrey Dahmer") Crew is still haunted by Calistra Zipper.
Fans take up the cause
of Human Taxidermy!
Update May 14, 2009:
New edit: 81 minutes.
21, 2009: A new ultra-fine
tuned edit at 81 minutes AND a special streamlined 69 minute version
has been created as well.
Update February 17,
2010: Film composer Steven Mahpar contributed a new score to several
scenes and the penultimate edit has been achieved.
Update July 8, 2010:
ABSOLUTE FINAL EDIT HAS NOW BEEN ACHIEVED! 77 minutes. Finito la comedia.
November 12, 2010:
Gary Dell'Abate, Howard Stern's right hand man, appears at Book Soup
Bookstore in West Hollywood, CA for the signing of his autobiography
"They Call Me Baba Booey." I took that occasion to present
him with a complimentary DVD of "The Calistra Zipper Story."
It was a ten-year reunion.
Notice the irony of
seeing Janie Bryant's name, the costume designer of the show I had
been hired to appear on six months earlier, displayed in the same
window as that announcing the appearance of Baba Booey.
Slowly creeping up to
the front of the line. Heaven only knows what his gatekeeper is thinking...
There he is
-- Gary Dell'Abatte himself. Would he remember Anthony Zipper a decade
Notice how wonderfully
my DVD compliments Howard's book which I found on display at Book
Soup whilst awaiting an audience with Baba Booey...
At last I reach the
front of the line...
Look at that TOOTHY
GRIN! He REMEMBERS Calistra!
Of course, I never heard
from those Stern people again I guess because they're still incredibly
pissed that I punked them so royally.