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The Shawshank Redemption (1994)

R | | Drama | 14 October 1994 (USA)
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Two imprisoned men bond over a number of years, finding solace and eventual redemption through acts of common decency.

Director:

Frank Darabont

Writers:

Stephen King (short story "Rita Hayworth and Shawshank Redemption"), Frank Darabont (screenplay)
Popularity
96 ( 2)

'The Shawshank Redemption' Without Morgan Freeman?

The Shawshank Redemption has become a classic film - it's even IMDb's top-rated movie of all time - but did you know it almost had an entirely different cast behind those legendary bars?

Who almost starred?

Top Rated Movies #1 | Nominated for 7 Oscars. Another 19 wins & 32 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Tim Robbins ... Andy Dufresne
Morgan Freeman ... Ellis Boyd 'Red' Redding
Bob Gunton ... Warden Norton
William Sadler ... Heywood
Clancy Brown ... Captain Hadley
Gil Bellows ... Tommy
Mark Rolston ... Bogs Diamond
James Whitmore ... Brooks Hatlen
Jeffrey DeMunn ... 1946 D.A.
Larry Brandenburg ... Skeet
Neil Giuntoli ... Jigger
Brian Libby ... Floyd
David Proval ... Snooze
Joseph Ragno ... Ernie
Jude Ciccolella ... Guard Mert
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Storyline

Chronicles the experiences of a formerly successful banker as a prisoner in the gloomy jailhouse of Shawshank after being found guilty of a crime he did not commit. The film portrays the man's unique way of dealing with his new, torturous life; along the way he befriends a number of fellow prisoners, most notably a wise long-term inmate named Red. Written by J-S-Golden

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Fear can hold you prisoner. Hope can set you free.

Genres:

Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language and prison violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official Facebook

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

14 October 1994 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Rita Hayworth and Shawshank Redemption See more »

Filming Locations:

St. Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$25,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$727,326, 20 November 1994, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$28,341,469

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$58,500,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital | SDDS

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Among the changes that Frank Darabont made to the story from the original novella was that there were originally three wardens and that Brooks' poignant story was conveyed in one paragraph. See more »

Goofs

Brooks states in his letter that he saw a car once when he was a kid. Brooks went to Shawshank in 1905 and the back story is he was convicted of murder for killing his wife and daughter after losing at poker one night. This would mean he was a young adult when he went away. In the couple of years before he went to prison, he might have seen a car, but as a kid, that would be highly unlikely, but not impossible, as there were several types of automobiles dating back as far as 1890 (the ones before that don't really count as car's), so if he was in his mid 20's when he went to prison he might have seen one of those vehicles when he was 10-15 years of age. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
District Attorney: Mr. Dufresne, describe the confrontation you had with your wife the night that she was murdered.
Andy Dufresne: It was very bitter. She said she was glad I knew, that she hated all the sneaking around. And she said that she wanted a divorce in Reno.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The man who cried and was beaten when Andy first arrived is listed and credited as "Fat Ass" -- the other inmates' nickname for him. See more »

Alternate Versions

One HBO showing included three extra scenes introduced by Morgan Freeman. One of the extra scenes showed Red, after his release, marveling over the mistaken idea that women no longer wore bras. Another earlier deleted scene shows more of the uncovering of Andy's escape route, including a guard who is sent down the shaft and who throws up when he realizes the sewer has been breached. Upon hearing this, and realizing Andy's successful escape, Red begins laughing hysterically in his cell, for which he is sent to solitary confinement and where he continues to laugh. See more »

Connections

Featured in WatchMojo: Top 10 Movie Monologues (2014) See more »

Soundtracks

Lovesick Blues
by Cliff Friend and Irving Mills
Performed by Hank Williams
Courtesy of PolyGram Special Markets
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
Tied for the best movie I have ever seen
26 November 2003 | by carfloSee all my reviews

Why do I want to write the 234th comment on The Shawshank Redemption? I am not sure - almost everything that could be possibly said about it has been said. But like so many other people who wrote comments, I was and am profoundly moved by this simple and eloquent depiction of hope and friendship and redemption.

The only other movie I have ever seen that effects me as strongly is To Kill a Mockingbird. Both movies leave me feeling cleaner for having watched them.

I didn't intend to see this movie at all: I do not like prison movies and I don't normally watch them. I work at a branch library and one day as I was checking The Shawshank Redemption out to one of our older patrons, she said to me, "Whenever I feel down or depressed, I check out this movie and watch it and it always makes me feel better." At the time, I thought that was very strange. One day there was nothing on TV except things I absolutely would not watch under any circumstance or things that I had seen too many times already. I remembered what she said, so I watched it. I have watched it many many times since then and it gets better with every showing.

No action, no special effects - just men in prison uniforms talking to each other.

The Shawshank Redemption and To Kill a Mockingbird are the best movies I have ever seen. I do not judge it by it's technical merits - I don't really care about that. I have read that Citizen Kane or The Godfather or this or that movie is the best movie ever made. They may have the best technique or be the most influential motion pictures ever made, but not the best. The best movies are ones that touch the soul. It takes a movie like The Shawshank Redemption to touch the soul.


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