"Marc and his group of scary-looking punk-rock friends [would] cruise the streets of downtown San Diego wearing armbands which read F.O.N.O., Friends of No One," recalls aspiring filmmaker Carl Schneider. He refers to punk artist Marc Rude, who drew countless local-concert flyers and record covers for the Misfits, the Offspring, L.A. Guns, and Battalion of Saints (a local band Rude also managed).
Schneider is shooting a documentary about Rude, who died five years ago this week "from failed health and not a drug overdose as rumored," according to a statement by Schneider on his website. Schneider says he's spent over three years filming interviews with nearly a hundred of Rude's contemporaries.
Rude helped run Dead or Alive concert productions, which brought punk acts such as Black Flag, the U.K. Subs, GBH, and the Subhumans to San Diego in the early '80s.
"He was promoting the shows, getting the halls, permits, dealing with cops, who would always try to shut them down," says Schneider. "As for the bands who played at these shows, he always red-carpeted them, giving them a place to stay at after the show. A cool example is when the Misfits came down, he had them stay at his house, served them spaghetti dinner, then partied with them afterwards. A year later, he did the cover of their Earth A.D. album."
At least one local in on the city's early punk scene is dismissive of the unfinished documentary.
"It might be overblown," says Rude's onetime business partner, Clay Colgin. "I started Dead or Alive.... I pulled Marc Rude into it because we needed someone who had connections with groups in L.A. Marc was a promoter, he was a cool dude, and he was a nefarious asshole.... All of us have our good side and bad side, and Marc struggled with that. I don't know if that's enough to justify [a movie]."
Colgin notes that no documentary update has been posted online in over six months. "It's been years [in production] but I don't know if the film is really happening or not.... I'm not a big fan of Carl's, he's been very uncommunicative."
Schneider has acknowledged in interviews that the last time he spoke with Rude was 1994, almost eight years before his death.