Rejected titles for Tampa Bay’s killer manatee movie
“No Wake Zone” is cool, but have the filmmakers considered “Lump Scare”?
Published Oct. 3|Updated Oct. 3

Flipping big news for fans of Florida’s notoriously bloodthirsty manatees: This week, the Tampa Bay Times reported that a movie called “No Wake Zone” will film locally for 13 days come January and February.

This pitch, per a Hillsborough County film incentive application, is for a comedy-horror about a mutant manatee that terrorizes Tampa Bay while a “grizzled marine patrol veteran” saves the day. This sounds like the movie I want to watch at 2 a.m. with debilitating insomnia and an open bag of dusty chocolate chips. This sounds like the movie I want to settle for after aimlessly scrolling six streaming platforms for an hour until finally telling my spouse, “Fine, we’re watching this.” This sounds like the movie I want to cue up on a Southwest flight to Albany.

“No Wake Zone” is, in fact, a solid title, but this movie process remains young. Writers are climbing out of a long strike, so a flow of ideas is crucial. Let’s see what other expired baking ingredients we can find in the pantry and generate a few more options, shall we? The beleaguered manatees of Florida deserve their moment in the murderous sun. No, seriously, manatees would be well within their rights to harm us.


“Cash Sea Cow”

“Small Fins, Big Sins”

“A Portly Revenge”

“The Thousand Pound Haunting”

“Cute, Cuddly, Cruel”

“It Follows Slowly”

“Lump Scare”


“Attack of the Killer Potato”

“Aye, That’s No Mermaid, Sir”

“Manatee Depravity”

“Lettuce Begin the Killings”

“Bubbles of Bedlam”

“Unholy Roly Poly”

“Peaceful to a Point”

“No, But Really, Manatees Should Seek Cinematic Retribution Because They Are Starving To Death in Distressing Numbers Since Humans Have Destroyed the Seagrass Manatees Eat Via Nonstop Development and Pollution. Have You Seen an Emaciated Manatee? That Is the Real Horror. But Wait, There’s More: Irresponsible People In Boats and Water Scooters Still Pose a Large Threat to Manatees, Killing Dozens Last Year. The Point Is, for How Much People Say They Love Manatees, They Really Don’t Act Like It. This Movie Sounds Fun, and Manatees Actually Deserve a Chance to Fight Back and Smack Some Homo Sapien Butt. But! Please Remember That Manatees Are a Vital Part of Florida’s Ecosystem and a Key Indicator of Environmental Health, and It’s Actually Super Important That Citizens and Elected Officials Act In Concert to Protect Them so We Might Restore Balance to Our Ecosystem and Enjoy Their Sweet Snouts for Centuries to Come.”

“Gray Slay.”

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