(Mansfield) - It's been 20 years since Hollywood came to Mansfield.
The Shawshank 20 Year Reunion is being held this weekend. It's been two decades since director Frank Darabont filmed "The Shawshank Redemption" at a number of sites in the three counties around Mansfield.
The film starring Morgan Freeman and Tim Robbins wasn't a hit when released, but it found a huge following when came out on home video. Many now consider it one of their favorite films of all time. It was based on the Stephen King novella "Rita Hayworth and the Shawshank Redemption."
The movie will be screened tonight at the historic Renaissance Theatre following a sold-out cocktail reception. Bob Gunton, who played Warden Samuel Norton, will be signing autographs after the movie showing.
In additional to touring popular spots like the Ohio State Reformatory (Shawshank State Prison), you can visit tour stops this weekend along The Shawshank Trail that aren’t always open to the public. The Trail was created to help visitors find sites from the film.
(Courtesy of the Mansfield/Richland County Convention & Visitors Bureau)
Along with the former Ohio State Reformatory, Shawshank Trail stops includes The Bissman Building (Brewer Hotel & Daily Bugle), Shawshank Woodshop in Upper Sandusky (prison woodshop), Pugh Cabin at Malabar Farm State Park (opening scene), “The Road to Buxton”, and others.
(Jim Kisicki, movie bank manager at Huntington National Bank. Courtesy of the Mansfield/Richland County Convention & Visitors Bureau.)
Not far from historic Malabar Farms, you can find the tree that Morgan Freeman's character Red sat under toward the end of the film.
(Photo by Darren Toms/WTAM 1100)
Lee Tasseff of the Mansfield Tourism Bureau says the film has been a big boost for the area, brining in visitors and film buffs from all over. Tasseff says the old Ohio State Reformatory is busy nearly year round.
Tasseff talked to WTAM 1100's Darren Toms:
There will also be college students recording people's memories of "The Shawshank Redemption" and what the now iconic movie has meant the them.
As Red said, "Get busy livin'...or get busy dyin'."
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