1. Arts & Entertainment

‘Waves’ with Sterling K. Brown has Weeki Wachee mermaids, Tampa Bay spots

It is the third time production company A24 has shot here.
From left: Kelvin Harrison Jr., Taylor Russell, Sterling K. Brown and Renée Elise Goldsberry in "Waves." [Courtesy of A24]
From left: Kelvin Harrison Jr., Taylor Russell, Sterling K. Brown and Renée Elise Goldsberry in "Waves." [Courtesy of A24]
Published Dec. 6, 2019
Updated Dec. 6, 2019

The new movie Waves, about a suburban family dealing with the emotional ups and downs of a tragic loss, is making waves as a can’t-miss film.

Much of the movie was shot in South Florida where the story unfolds. But the Tampa Bay area makes a few cameos.

Guy Balson, who was the movie’s local location scout, said the production spent two days here in summer 2018 and filmed a sunset at Fort De Soto, a drive across the Sunshine Skyway bridge and a canoeing trip in Weeki Wachee.

Each of those might be hard to spot, he said, since they are quick scenes near the end of the movie. But the film also showcases Weeki Wachee Springs’ famed mermaid show. And that, he said, is unmistakable.

“They even show the Weeki Wachee sign,” Balson said. “When they showed that at the cast and crew premiere a few weeks ago in Miami, the crowd cheered. It was a cool moment."

The movie was directed by Trey Edward Shults and stars Kelvin Harrison Jr., Sterling K. Brown and Alexa Demie. It was produced by A24, which was behind the Academy Award-winning movie Moonlight.

The movie poster for "Waves." [A24]

RELATED: The Zola Twitter saga went viral. The ‘Zola’ movie is being filmed in Tampa Bay.

A24 has shot in the Tampa Bay area on three occasions. The company filmed Spring Breakers in St. Petersburg in 2012. And in November 2018, it came here to make Zola, about a stripper’s wild road trip from Detroit to Tampa.

St. Petersburg-Clearwater film commissioner Tony Army said Zola will premiere at Salt Lake City’s prestigious Sundance Film Festival. The festival runs Jan. 23 through Feb. 2.


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