“Escape from Shawshank” was released more than 27 years ago and received critical acclaim, and despite the box office receipts of “Escape from Shawshank” during its initial release in theaters, the 1994 film has since been considered one of the most beloved films in cinema. Along with receiving seven Academy Award nominations, “The Shawshank Redemption” is still the highest-rated IMDb movie of all time. In 2015, the film was selected by the Library of Congress for preservation in the National Film Registry. So, is “Shawshank Escape” a real story?
“Shawshank Escape” follows banker Andy Dufresne (Tim Robbins), a man sentenced to life in prison in 1947, and he spends the next 19 years developing a plan to escape from Shawshank State Prison. During his time in prison, Dufresne befriends a cellmate and a smuggler By Ellis “Red” Redding, the narrator of the film (played by Morgan Freeman), who unknowingly provides the banker with the tools needed to escape. Although he acts as the narrator of the film, “Shawshank Escape” never reveals why Red is imprisoned. On the other hand, the source material gives more of the character’s backstory.
The answer to the question “Is the Shawshank Escape a real story?” unfortunately, no. “The Shawshank Escape” is not based on real events, but is an adaptation of Stephen King’s novel “Rita Hayworth and the Shawshank Escape” from 1982. The story was originally published in the collection “Different Seasons”, a collection of four stories by King related to each season of the year. King’s novella was adapted from a screenplay by Frank Darabont in the early 1990s, and Rita Hayworth was removed from the Shawshank title to avoid confusion. “Escape from Shawshank” was Darabont’s theatrical debut as a director, although it was not his first adaptation of King’s work and not his last.
“Escape from Shawshank” is based on the novel by Stephen King
Darabont’s first credit as a screenwriter and director is a 1983 short film adapted from King’s short story “The Woman in the Room”, first published in the 1978 Night Shift collection. King charged the young director just a dollar for the right to turn “The Woman in the Room” into a short film, and this opened the door for Darabont to return to Rita Hayworth and “The Shawshank Escape” in 1987. “A Nightmare on Elm Street, 3” Darabont paid King $5,000 for the right to turn a prison story into a feature film. Darabont has regularly collaborated with Stephen King since the creation of The Shawshank Escape, including in another prison film, The Green Mile.
Shawshank is a real prison
Although the answer to the question “Is the Shawshank Escape a true story?” No, Shawshank Prison is mentioned in several works by Stephen King, and prison scenes were filmed in a real Ohio prison. Although the film is technically set in Maine, the main filming took place mainly in Mansfield, Ohio, and the filming location of the film was the Ohio Correctional Colony. The historic prison was built between 1886 and 1910 and operated until 1990. The ruling of the United States Federal Court ordered the closure of this institution, and in 1993 production of the filming of the film “Escape from Shawshank” began. in other films such as “Tango and Cash” and “Air Force One”, while various artists such as Marilyn Manson and Lil Wayne also shot music videos in space. The famous prison is now open to tourists 4 days a week from 11:00 to 16:00, from February to March and from November to December. Although this place has been used for the filming of numerous films and TV shows since the “Shawshank Escape”, Stephen King’s film certainly made this place famous.
“Escape from Shawshank” is not based on real events, so why do some still think so? This may have something to do with the resemblance to a real escaped prisoner in the same prison in which the film was shot. An inmate named Frank Freshwaters escaped from prison in 1959 after being sentenced to 20 years in an Ohio correctional facility. Although Freshwaters, like Andy, discovered the benefits of friendly relations with prison officials, he did not pave his way to freedom. The convict was also captured 56 years after the escape, a fate that would greatly change the finale of “Escape from Shawshank.” Despite the similarities, viewers just have to accept “Shawshank” as an innovative work of art, and not as a real chronicle.