Take A Self-Guided Film Tour of 4 Movies Filmed in Tampa


Downtown Tampa. Image by Mark Szelistowski. Wikipedia Commons.
Downtown Tampa. Image by Mark Szelistowski. Wikipedia Commons.


Everyone needs a break from Netflix and Chill, right? But sometimes you really need to get out and grab some of the old fashion vitamin D from the sun. So what can you do when you have movies on the mind, but really need a breath of fresh air? Take a self-guided film tour of 4 movies filmed in the city of Tampa.

Now to be clear. Over 20 movies filmed in the Tampa Bay area, but we all know there is a difference between Tampa and Lutz and Tampa and St. Petersburg. However, these four movies, which vary greatly in subject and genre, we filmed within the Tampa city limits.

Take a look at the list and see if you remember or recognize any of the following locations that are still standing being in these films.

Goodfellas - One of the most famous gangster movies of all time. Directed by Martin Scorsese and released in 1990, Goodfellas starred Robert DeNiro, Ray Liotta and Joe Pesci. In the film, Deniro's and Liotta's characters, Jimmy Conway and Henry Hill, are shaking down an associate for money. The "I'll Get the Money" scene was fictiously located at the Tampa City Zoo. However, we all know the location to be the Lowry Park Zoo. While you will see a lot of unique animals there, you will not see the lion from the movie. But you can still have fun wondering the zoo looking for where the scene was shot.

The Parent Trap II - This 1986 Disney movie starred Tom Skerritt and Hayley Mills. Two girls plot to bring their single parents together to keep one from moving away. Mitchell Elementary School was the backdrop for the film. Not just the backdrop, but was also the actual name of the school the girls attended. Today you can still see the same building standing and in use for classes for those in South Tampa. If you want to get a close look at the building, you may want to check ahead with the school. Otherwise, drive by slowly and embrace the location of the 80's classic from afar.

Magic Mike - The 2012 film about male exotic dancers certainly caught the attention of many. Channing Tatum, Matt Bomer, Joe Manganiello and Matthew McConaughey share the screen in order to tell the behind the scene stories of stripping. The Amphitheatre provided a stage and backdrop to the movie. Tampa has its fair share of strip clubs, but this location made the cut to film this movie. While the venue is still standing, it did suffer a fire in April. It is unclear as to if you will be able to see the same stage upon its re-open.

The Punisher - The dark comic book action film from 2004 starred Thomas Jane as the Punisher, John Travolta and Laura Harring and Howard and Livia Saint. Apparently Tampa was a really great movie to shoot this film as many locations were used. However, only four still remain. The 100 N. Tampa office building, the Laurel Street Bridge, Falk Theater and The Claw Golf Course. It looks like cinematically, revenge is best served in Tampa.

As stated before, there are many other great films classified as large feature films shot in the city of Tampa and surrounding areas. We have seen the likes of Johnny Depp, Burt Reynolds Jessica Tandy, Steve Guttenberg and more. As the city and state fights to keep attracting large films in our area, we will begin to see more A-list actors appear at some of our local favorite places.

While you can check out other films and film locations, here are four you can relive when you need a break from Netflix.

Do you know of any other places that served as film locations in Tampa? If so, please comment below. Your response may be used for a future article.

Ebony T. Grimsley-Vaz is the Creative Director and Owner of Above Promotions Company. She is also the author of "Because You're Small: Effective Marketing Strategies for Immediate Implementation" which is sold on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and other stores and a contributor to various media outlets.