The city of Tampa, Florida, has delivered more than just death metal and a Super Bowl win. It’s also the hometown of actress Brittany Snow. Last year, 22-year-old Snow appeared in the remake of Hairspray. This year, she carried her own film with Prom Night, which debuted at No. 1 at the box office. Snow can next be seen in Finding Amanda with Matthew Broderick, and in Black Water Transit, a thriller about a post-Katrina New Orleans with Laurence Fishburne that’s the first narrative feature from director Tony Kaye since 1998’s bold, embattled American History X. (Kaye famously filed suit against the studio releasing the film and fought to have his name removed from the credits. But that’s another story.) Snow and Kaye recently connected on the phone.
TONY KAYE: This couldn’t have happened at a better time ’cause I needed to talk to you anyway.
BRITTANY SNOW: Oh, good! [laughs] Okay . . .
TK: I’ve got a young band arriving from Cincinnati. I want you to front the band, and I want to record it for Black Water Transit.
BS: I would love to. Does it matter that I’m not, like, an amazing singer?
TK: I’ve heard you sing, seen you act, and I think you’re great — you’ll just combine the two and invent another character.
BS: Okay. I was just talking to somebody about things that you would text message me about my character: “Yoko Ono, Marilyn Monroe, and Courtney Love on crystal meth.” It was the most intense-feeling character I’ve ever done.
TK: When I met you I said, “I think we got to just empty you out.” I started looking at some stuff, and thought, Wait a minute, that’s Madonna. And then I thought, No, that’s Princess Diana. And then I thought, No, wait a minute . . . I don’t know . . .
BS: This is hilarious.
TK: So, it’s like I don’t know who the hell you are. But that means you’re doing your job.
BS: That’s the nicest compliment. I don’t know who I am either I’m learning so much about how far I could be pushed. I’m excited to see the film.
TK: It’s very eccentric. We’re racing to finish it right now-you know, you and the band.
BS: Oh, that’s so funny. I have a band, kind of.
TK: Yeah, it would be great if you went on tour.
BS: You know, I got a tattoo saying, “Freedom From Fear” because of Black Water Transit.
TK: If you get another one, get “Crave Fear.”
BS: Don’t test me. I might.
TK: Crave fear. Kill ego. Run from praise. Shrink time. And question blindness. My daughter Ruby’s standing here, telling me to get Kanye West tickets. How many tickets would you like?
BS: However many tickets you want to give me!
TK: Okay. Should we just say, “One, two, three,” and both hang up at the same time?
BS: Yeah, I think so. I think that’s the way.
TK: Okay, ready? One.
TK: Three. [click]