1. Arts & Entertainment

'Bushwick' stars Snow, Bautista give Tampa a strong presence at Sundance

Actress Brittany Snow of 'Bushwick' attends the Acura Studio during Sundance Film Festival on January 22, 2017 in Park City, Utah. [Neilson Barnard | Getty Images for Acura]
Published Jan. 25, 2017

Leaders of the film commission offices from the Tampa Bay area are in Park City, Utah, this week for the Sundance Film Festival.

As the largest independent film festival in the United States, it's an ideal place to meet directors and producers and sell them on making their next film or screening of their current movie here.

And these local leaders are reporting back that the talent in this region is on full display at this year's festival, making their jobs easier.

Among the darlings that are screening at the annual event is Bushwick, an action flick about a modern-day U.S. civil war starring Tampa native Brittany Snow and Tampa transplant Dave Bautista.

"This is a great compliment to our area," said Dale Gordon, Tampa-Hillsborough film and digital media commissioner who is at the festival. "Brittany Snow was raised here, so it shows this is the type of city from where stars emerge. And Bautista is a star who could have lived anywhere but chose Tampa for its quality of life."

Added Tony Armer, St. Petersburg-Clearwater film commissioner who also is in Utah: "Having two of the actors from our area in the film is a great way to draw attention to the talent we have locally."

In the film, when a Texas military force invades their Brooklyn neighborhood, 20-year-old Lucy (played by Snow) and a war veteran Stupe (Bautista) must depend on each other to survive.

The blonde-haired, blue-eyed Snow, a 30-year-old graduate of Gaither High School now residing in Los Angeles, is best known for her starring role in the musical Pitch Perfect and its sequel.

The monstrous muscle-bound Bautista, 48 and raised in Washington D.C., rose from poverty to fame as a champion in World Wrestling Entertainment and dabbled in mixed martial arts before landing the role of Drax the Destroyer in the Marvel blockbuster movie Guardians of the Galaxy.

Despite their different backgrounds, Bushwick producer Adam Folk told the Times the two developed a friendship and credited that in part to their Tampa link.

"When Dave mentioned he lived in Florida, that started a connection," he said. "She still has family there. It was a real bond they had."

Tampa's Gasparilla International Film Festival and St. Petersburg's Sunscreen Film Festival had members of their programming committees attend a screening of Bushwick, but neither would comment on if they would try to bring it to their events.

Producer Folk said that regardless of whether this area gets a festival screening, due to the positive reaction it has received, he is confident his independent film will have a theatrical run.

Contact Paul Guzzo at or (813) 226-3394. Follow @PGuzzoTimes.


  1. Emilia Clarke, left, and Kit Harington in a scene from HBO blockbuster "Game of Thrones." AP
    The Game of Thrones Live Concert Experience and the Who come to town, plus a ‘Greatest Showman’ sing-along at Tampa Theatre.
  2. In this Thursday, Aug. 22, 2019 photo, Esme Goldman, 13, streams an episode of the '90s sitcom "Friends" via Netflix in her bedroom at her home, in Pasadena, Calif. “Friends” marks its 25th anniversary Sunday, Sept. 22 and the quintessential 1990s sitcom has attracted a new slew of viewers who are barely half that age. Tween and teen girls in particular have embraced the show with huge enthusiasm, taking a show that belonged to Generation X and making it their own.  (Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP) CHRIS PIZZELLO  |  Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP
    “It is old but you can’t tell that much when you’re watching,” said 15-year-old Sammy Joyce.
  3. "House Hunters," shot at a home in the Bayshore Beautiful area.  (Times | 2007) Tampa Tribune
    Whang, 57, was also a comedian and actress.
  4. On Saturday, Disturbed will perform at Amalie Arena in Tampa. TRAVIS SHINN  |  Warner Records
    The Bucs Beach Bash goes down in St. Pete Beach, Disturbed plays Amalie Arena and the Dance Hall Festival continues at the Studio@620.
  5. Visitor Sara Crigger of Nashville views the Dali masterwork painting "The Hallucinogenic Toreador" (1969-1970) this month with the aid of the Dali app on her smartphone. "Using this is like holding an art history class in your hand," Crigger said. The "Visual Magic: Masterworks in Augmented Reality" exhibit runs through Nov. 3 at the Dali Museum in St. Petersburg. SCOTT KEELER  |   Times
    With augmented reality, 19th century prints, bronzes and food photography, a well-rounded experience awaits.
  6. Salman Rushdie is the author of "Quichotte." Rachel Eliza Griffiths
    The acclaimed author will talk about the book at Tampa Theatre on Sept. 25. | Review
  7. Aaron Shulman is the author of "The Age of Disenchantments." Ecco Books
    The author is reading ‘City of Quartz,’ a history of Los Angeles.
  8. A man takes a picture of a sign at the Little A'Le'Inn during an event inspired by the "Storm Area 51" internet hoax, Thursday, Sept. 19, 2019, in Rachel, Nev. Hundreds have arrived in the desert after a Facebook post inviting people to "see them aliens" got widespread attention and gave rise to festivals this week. JOHN LOCHER  |  AP
    The Air Force has issued stern warnings for people not to try to enter the Nevada Test and Training Range, where Area 51 is located.
  9. A scene from a balcony cabin on a 2017 Alaskan cruise. BOYZELL HOSEY  |  Tampa Bay Times
    You can have the trip of a lifetime without paying for it for the rest of your life.
  10. Evander Preston inside his gallery Evander Preston Contemporary Jewelry Design in Pass-a-Grille. The portrait of Preston (left, top) was done by Adam Turkel. The carved wooden sculpture of a white dinner jacket to Preston's right was done by Tampa artist Fraser Smith. Preston died on Sept. 14. Times (2007)
    His gallery and his eccentric presence have been a constant in the St. Pete Beach area for decades.