If you haven’t seen Shawshank Redemption yet, then we highly advise that you give it a try because this is an amazing movie. After all, Shawshank Redemption is the highest rated flick on IMDB (international movie data base) and the performances offered by the actors are stellar. Despite being such a popular movie, there are lots of cool facts that most of the fans don’t know about. Here is where we come in because today we are going to present the top 20 best Shawshank Redemption facts.
20. The Stephen King Novel
We are going to kick things off with the fact that Shawshank Redemption is based on the Stephen King novel “Rita Hayworth and The Shawshank Redemption”. The cool thing about this fact is that the Stephen King collection contains four novellas and only three of them were made into movies.
19. Morgan Freeman
Morgan Freeman plays the role of Red who is an old timer that knows how to get illegal contraband into the prison. However, Red was actually portrayed as a ginger-haired Irishman in the novels by Stephen King.
18. The Movie Rights
Since we are talking about the brilliant Stephen King, we need to mention that he was offered a mere $5,000 check for selling the movie rights. However, the writer never cashed that check and instead, he keeps it framed on his wall.
17. The End
Those of you who watched the movie will remember that it ends with Red searching for Andy. However, this wasn’t what the director had in mind. Darabont actually wanted to end the movie with a shot of Red simply leaving the prison without giving the viewer any hints about what happens next.
16. Stolen Money
Andy, the main character of the movie stole $370,000 from the Warden. While this might not seem like such a big fortune nowadays, the $370,000 actually adjust to $2,703,466.67 in 2019 due to inflation.
15. The Baseball Shot
The first chat between Andy and Red happens while Red playing with a baseball. That scene took nine hours to shoot and Morgan Freeman had to put a sling on his arm the next day due to the pain from throwing the baseball for such a long time.
14. Deleted Scenes
One of the most interesting facts about Shawshank Redemption is that there are lots of deleted scenes. Some of the scenes contain things such as when Jake (Brooks’s pet crow) receives a funeral from the other convicts after Brooks leaves the prison.
13. The Location
The reason why the movie felt so real is because it was actually filmed at a real prison. The movie was shot at the Ohio State Reformatory in Mansfield, Ohio which was shut down for three years due to a class action lawsuit by the inmates.
12. The Same Prison
The same prison that was used to film The Shawshank Redemption can also be spotted in movies such as Air Force One, Tango and Cash, and also the famous TV Show House starring Hugh Laurie.
11. The Warden’s Assistant
The man highlighted by the yellow circle was the assistant of the real Warden who was in charge of the Ohio State Reformatory. He appears in the scene when Tommy Williams gets brought to the prison.
10. Crow Food
Shooting the movie was difficult and the crew had to find a maggot that “died peacefully” so that Brooks could feed it to his crow in the famous scene. The reason behind this is that the American Humane Association insisted that the maggots died in their sleep.
9. Brad Pitt
Even though Gill Bellows did a great job playing Tommy Williams, the director actually had someone else in mind. He wanted Brad Pitt to play Tommy Williams but unfortunately, the famous actor was already booked to film “Interview with a Vampire”.
8. Lots of Airtime
Shawshank Redemption was such a massive hit that it received 151 hours of airtime on US television channels when it aired in 2013. This means that US citizens could watch the movie for six continuous days!
7. Popular Rental Movie
The interesting thing about Shawshank Redemption is that despite being a masterpiece of a movie, it wasn’t too successful when it hit theatres. However, the movie made lots of profits by becoming the highest-grossing video rentals of all time.
6. The Source of Inspiration
Director Frank Darabont revealed in an interview that he used to watch the movie Goodfellas (1990) every Sunday while Shawshank Redemption was filmed. Goodfellas (1990) inspired him to add many things to the movie such as voice-over narration.
5. The Liberation of Brooks
Brooks is shown as a kind old man in the movie, but what the movie never shows us is that the old man was actually sent to prison for murdering his wife and daughter. He doesn’t seem like such a good guy after all.
4. Morgan Freeman’s Son
There is a scene in the movie where Red AKA Morgan Freeman’s mugshots from when he was young are hanging from a wall. The pictures are actually showing Morgan’s younger son, Alfredo Freeman.
3. Tom Cruise
We previously noted that the director wanted Brad Pitt to star in the movie, but Brad Pitt is not the only star that the director desired. The director also wanted to get Tom Cruise to play the role of Andy Dufresne. Tom Cruise was the one who declined the offer because he didn’t believe in the director’s vision.
2. The Manufacturing Date
When Andy Dufresne is finally free, he goes out to drive a Pontiac GTO close to the ocean and to enjoy the breeze. The problem here is that this car was manufactured in 1969 and that scene in the movie takes place in 1965.
1.Stephen King Stories
The director of Shawshank Redemption went on to adapt two more of Stephen King’s stories to movies. He made “The Green Mile” and “The Mist” which are also great movies.