TOM the Movie tells the story of how the artist Touko Laaksonen, who needs to hide his sexuality, becomes an international gay icon, Tom of Finland. The movie is an international independent feature film produced by Finland based Special Film Company. The movie will be filmed in the summer 2014 and released worldwide in the early 2015.
This movie needs to be as uncompromising, passionate and bold as Touko’s art was. To make a striking picture that Tom’s men everywhere can be proud of, we need to look beyond traditional sources of funding. Crowdfunding has proved its power to make independent and daring stories to come true. That’s why we have decided to rely on the awesome community surrounding our production to ensure complete artistic freedom to re-create Touko’s fantasies on screen.
Until the year 1971, being gay in Finland could land you in jail for years. There was a boy born in 1920. In his childhood he drew pictures of naked men. While drawing, he wore only leather boots. As a young man he fought in the war and had sex with his fellow soldiers, both Finnish and German. During his adulthood he lived a double life: by day, a talented advertising artist and a pianist, by night a genius creator of erotic drawings. We remember him through leather, huge muscles, even larger cocks and humour – empowering the masculine gay man. You know the artist Tom of Finland. Now meet Touko.
The movie is set in the 50’s, when Touko became Tom. The era is an unspoken chapter in Finland’s history. Thousands of homosexuals were arrested in police raids and house searches, people were sentenced to jail for years, and those caught had their names published in the newspapers. Many couldn’t cope with the shame of being exposed and committed suicide. We want to make the truth about our history known and tell everybody that no-one needs to be ashamed of who they are anymore.
Touko himself is an interesting character in a society where homosexuals are often stereotyped as people who have more in common with the opposite gender, than their own. Touko was a decorated war hero, a pianist and composer, a sophisticated, travelled man and a successful advertising artist. For the young women of Helsinki, he was the most eligible bachelor in town. This masculinity and immense charm, coupled with his modesty, is something that really fascinates us.
We want to expand the boundaries of the Finnish movie industry, both in style and content. We do feel that to be true to Touko’s story the language of the film has to be Finnish. However, we are making a visually stunning film where action speaks louder than words. We are making a movie that doesn’t look or feel like it was produced in a small northern country. We like to sum the style of the film with the words “Boogie Nights meets The Pianist”.
The movie is an unauthorized biographical film about Touko Laaksonen and the Tom of Finland Foundation is not involved in the project. We want to make sure that the film is faithful to Touko’s character and his life, thus we have consulted his close friends while working on the script. They have told us that Touko would be proud of the story and the overall style of the film. They’ve also told us that he would have had a good laugh reading it. That means a world to us.
You want to see this movie. We need to make it. Let’s help each other out.
In exchange for your support, we promise you a masculine, ncompromising feature film, a change to be a part of the production and of course our everlasting gratitude.
Tom crowdfunding campaign is on and we would love for you to join us. Check our campaign in Indiegogo and join our leathery journey through Touko’s world.