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St. Pete and Tarpon Springs filmmakers pitching local movies to Hollywood's Duplass Brothers

By Christopher Spata
A scene from "Epiphany."

If all goes well, filmmakers from St. Petersburg and Tarpon Springs could see their Tampa Bay-set films get a funding and production boost from the Duplass Brothers.

St. Petersburg's Vitale Bros., best known for their local mural art, and Tarpon Springs sisters Koula Sossiadis Kazista and Katina Sossiadis are among the finalists in the Hometown Heroes Rally contest, drawing the most "followers" and funding for their projects on the Seed&Spark crowdfunding site.

Both filmmaking teams will now have an opportunity to pitch their respective film projects to the Duplass Brothers production team, the indie-darling production company headed by Mark and Jay Duplass, aka the people behind the films Puffy Chair, Jeff Who Lives at Home and The Skeleton Twins as well as the HBO series Togetherness and Animals.

The pitches will be reviewed this month and, if selected, the Duplass Brothers will serve as executive producers on the films and provide as much as $25,000 in interest free loans for production.

"This is great, because as executive producers, the Duplass Brothers are investing in making the film a financial success as well. It's only paid back if the film makes money, meaning the filmmakers have even more tools to build sustainable careers," KT McBratney, a spokesperson for Seed&Spark said.

Winners, which will be announced Nov. 4, will work directly with Duplass Brothers Productions as needed on anything from scripting, to marketing to distribution.

The Vitale Bros. are pitching Mini Lights, a "skate horror" film based on the St. Petersburg urban legend involving Booker Creek, a witch and little green creatures that come out after dark.

The Sossiadis sisters are pitching Epiphany, following a young Greek-American girl desperate to connect with her negligent father in the sponge diving town of Tarpon Springs.

You can watch teasers for both movies below.