The Shawshank Redemption – Film Locations

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The Shawshank Redemption is a 1994 American drama film written and directed by Frank Darabont and starring Tim Robbins and Morgan Freeman. Adapted from the Stephen King novella Rita Hayworth and Shawshank Redemption, the film tells the story of Andy Dufresne, a banker who is sentenced to life in Shawshank State Prison for the murder of his wife and her lover despite his claims of innocence. During his time at the prison, he befriends a fellow inmate, Ellis Boyd “Red” Redding, and finds himself protected by the guards after the warden begins using him in his money laundering operation.

Despite being a box office flop (that barely recouped its budget), the film received multiple award nominations and outstanding reviews from critics for its acting, story, and realism. It has since been successful on cable television, VHS, DVD, and Blu-ray. It was included in the American Film Institute‘s 100 Years…100 Movies 10th Anniversary Edition.

The Cast

  • Tim Robbins as Andy Dufresne. Kevin Costner, Tom Hanks and Brad Pitt were all offered the role but turned it down because of scheduling conflicts with Waterworld, Forrest Gump and Interview with the Vampire, respectively.
  • Morgan Freeman as Ellis Boyd “Red” Redding, Andy’s best friend and the film’s narrator; convicted of murder in 1927. Before Freeman was cast, Clint Eastwood, Harrison Ford, Paul Newman, and Robert Redford were each considered for the role. Although written as a middle-aged Irishman with greying red hair (as in the novella), Darabont cast Freeman for his authoritative presence and demeanor; he could not see anyone else as Red.  The short dialogue with Andy is a jest towards this casting decision, as when asked about the origin of his nickname, Red ironically replies, “Maybe it’s because I’m Irish.” Freeman once stated in an interview that Rita Hayworth and the Shawshank Redemption is his favorite book.
  • Bob Gunton as Warden Samuel Norton. Although he is well versed in the Bible and presents himself as a pious, devout Christian and reform-minded administrator, his actions reveal him to be corrupt, ruthless, and remorseless.
  • William Sadler as Heywood, a member of Red’s gang of long-serving convicts.
  • Clancy Brown as Capt. Byron Hadley, chief of the guards. Hadley is a sadistic guard who thinks nothing of delivering beatings to the inmates to keep them in line. When cast for the role, Brown declined the offer to study real-life prison guards as preparation for his role, because he felt that he would end up with too many inspirations to balance.
  • Gil Bellows as Tommy Williams, a young convict whose experiences in a previous prison hold the truth about Andy’s innocence.
  • Mark Rolston as Bogs Diamond, the head of “The Sisters” gang and a prison rapist.
  • James Whitmore as Brooks Hatlen, prison librarian/trustee and one of the oldest convicts at Shawshank, having been in prison since 1905. Darabont cast Whitmore because he was one of his favorite character actors.
  • Jeffrey DeMunn as the prosecuting attorney in Andy Dufresne’s trial.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Shawshank_Redemption

The Shawshank Redemption location: Ohio State Reformatory, Mansfield, Ohio

The Shawshank Redemption location: ‘Shawshank State Prison’: Ohio State Reformatory, Mansfield, Ohio

One of those odd sleepers, a modest success on release, Shawshank went on to a phenomenally popular afterlife on video and DVD.

Andy Dufresne (Tim Robbins) bides his time during twenty years’ imprisonment for the murder of his wife in this adaptation of a Stephen King story. And beingStephen King, the setting is once again Maine, though you’ll find ‘Shawshank State Prison’ in Ohio. It’s the forbiddingly Gothic Mansfield Reformatory, 100 Reformatory Road, Mansfield, on US Route 30, about 80 miles southwest of Cleveland.

Built between 1886 and 1910, the reformatory remained in operation until 1990 and was scheduled for demolition when the film was made. In fact, much of the prison yard has now gone to make room for the adjacent Richland Correctional Institution, but the striking Administration Building lives on as a tourist attraction. Find it just north of downtown Mansfield, off South Olivesburg Road.

Although some prison interiors were recreated in the studio, the office of the corrupt Governor Norton (Bob Gunton) really is Mansfield Reformatory.

Prison scenes for Air Force One, Harry and Walter Go To New York and Tango & Cash were also filmed in the reformatory.

The Shawshank Redemption filming location: Mansfield, Ohio

The Shawshank Redemption filming location: stickers identify locations on the Shawshank Trail: Shawshank Trail, Mansfield, Ohio

Mansfield Tourism has laid out a helpful Shawshank Trail if you want to explore the film’s other locations in Mansfield and the surrounding area. Stickers identify the key locations.

The Shawshank Redemption filming location: Malabar Farm, Mansfield, Ohio

The Shawshank Redemption filming location: the house where Andy Dufresne’s wife is murdered: Malabar Farm State Park, Mansfield, Ohio

The golf pro’s house, where Andy’s wife and her lover are murdered, is the Pugh Cabin, which you’ll find on the grounds of Malabar Farm State Park, 4050 Bromfield Road, south of Lucas, a few miles southeast of Mansfield itself.

The Shawshank Redemption filming location: Bissman Building, North Main Street, Ohio

The Shawshank Redemption filming location: the ‘Brewer’, the halfway house to which Brooks is sent: Bissman Building, North Main Street, Ohio

About 40 miles west of Mansfield, in the town of Upper Sandusky, Andy’s trial is held at Wyandot Courthouse, 109 South Sandusky Avenue.

Incidentally, 228 South 8th Street, also in Upper Sandusky, served as the woodwork shop of ‘Shawshank Prison’.

The Shawshank Redemption filming location: Bissman Building, North Main Street, Ohio

The Shawshank Redemption filming location: the ‘Brewer’, the halfway house to which Brooks is sent: Bissman Building, North Main Street, Ohio

The town into which the elderly, institutionalised Brooks (James Whitmore) is released is Mansfield itself. The ‘Brewer’, the halfway house where he carves ‘Brooks was here’ into the beams, is the Haunted Bissman Building, 193 North Main Street. Built in 1887 as HQ of the Bissman grocery company, the now-disused building is supposedly inhabited by mysterious spirits, and you can participate in regular paranormal investigations. The Bissman is also featured inEdward Douglas’s 2010 horror The Dead Matter, with splatter-master Tom Savini.

The interior of the ‘Brewer’, incidentally, was filmed inside Mansfield Reformatory.

The Shawshank Redemption filming location: Central Park, Mansfield, Ohio

The Shawshank Redemption filming location: Brooks looks for jake the crow as he feeds the pigeons: Central Park, Mansfield, Ohio

South from the Bissman Building, on Main Street, it’s in Mansfield’s Central Parkthat Brooks sits on a bench forlornly feeding the pigeons, hoping to get a glimpse of Jake, the crow he reared.

The Shawshank Redemption filming location: Huntington Bank, West Main Street, Ashland, Ohio

The Shawshank Redemption filming location: ‘Randall Stephens’ withdraws his money from ‘Maine National Bank’: Huntington Bank, West Main Street, Ashland, Ohio

‘Maine National Bank’, into which the invented ‘Randall Stephens’ strides to withdraw the Warden’s money, is Huntington Bank, 19 West Main Street, inAshland, about 12 miles northeast of Mansfield. The bank is currently closed.

The Shawshank Redemption filming location: Carrousel Antiques, West Main Street, Mansfield, Ohio

The Shawshank Redemption filming location: Red looks in the gunshop and contemplates breaking his parole: Carrousel Antiques, West Main Street, Mansfield, Ohio

It’s back to Mansfield, where Carrousel Antiques, 118 North Main Street, provided the gun store window into which Red (Morgan Freeman) looks as he considers breaking parole to be returned to prison.

The Shawshank Redemption filming location: Pleasant Valley Road, Mansfield, Ohio

The Shawshank Redemption filming location: the oak tree at ‘Buxton’: Pleasant Valley Road, Mansfield, Ohio

The ‘hayfield up near Buxton’, to which Red travels keeping his promise to Andy, is a private field near to Malabar Farm. You can see the oak tree north ofPleasant Valley Road (Co Hwy 303) at Bromfield Road, a little to the east of the entrance to the farm. The majestic tree is a little reduced after being split in two by a lightning strike in 2011.

The tree is on private property, used as agricultural farmland, so please don’t trespass. The owners of the tree are negotiating the opportunity to view the oak tree up close for the Shawshank Reunion 20th Anniversary in 2014. It’s important to protect the land, the crops and the oak tree for people to enjoy in the years ahead.

The Shawshank Redemption filming location: Pleasant Valley Road, Mansfield, Ohio

The Shawshank Redemption filming location: Red keeps his promise to Andy: Pleasant Valley Road, Mansfield, Ohio

Back in Ashland, not far from the bank, Revivals Thrift Store 345 Orange Streetbecame The ‘Trailways Bus Station’, where Red boards the bus to ‘Fort Hancock, Texas’.

The Shawshank Redemption filming location: Orange Street, Ashland, Ohio

The Shawshank Redemption filming location: the ‘Trailways Bus Station’, where Red catches the bus to ‘Fort Hancock, Texas’: Orange Street, Ashland, Ohio

 

Andy and Red are finally reunited in ‘Mexico’, but that’s not the blue of the Pacific. It’s the Caribbean, and the beach at ‘Zihuatanejo’ is Sandy Point National Wildlife Refuge, a two-mile crescent of sand just south of Frederikstedon the southwestern tip of St Croix., largest of the U.S. Virgin islands, an unincorporated territory of the United States.

It is a remote and peaceful spot, but needs to be treated with respect. The beach is a hatching ground for leatherback turtles, and open only at limited times (10am to 4pm on Saturdays and Sundays), and not at all during the breeding season.

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