Talk:Rita Hayworth and Shawshank Redemption

Page contents not supported in other languages.
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Did Dufresne Kill his wife?[edit]

Removed this last sentence of article:

For example, in the novella, Andy did kill his wife for the insurance money, so that he has not been wrongfully incarcerated in Shawshank.

Not in the text I've read (the UK edition).

This article is based on the MOVIE, not the novella, which differs in many details. In the novella, he admittedly did kill his wife for the money. This creates a rather different situation that is an important difference in the plot of the movie. Perhaps, in republishing, this story has changed bit, but not so much that so many details are different.
Unless somebody's been shifting the talk pages around, this article is about the novella; The Shawshank Redemption is about the movie. And Andy didn't kill his wife in either version. --Paul A 04:10, 3 Nov 2004 (UTC)
That's true. In the novella, it's Red who killed his wife for the insurance money. Andy is completely innocent in both versions. (In the movie we don't find out whom Red killed or why.) --Angr 08:03, 31 Mar 2005 (UTC)

To clear things up: In both the novella and the film, we find out Andy did not kill anyone and that he is in fact innocent. In the novella Red explains how he kills his wife for insurance money, in the film we only find out he killed someone. This is definitely correct and I could provide several links if necessary.--Sadistic monkey 01:54, 24 February 2007 (UTC)[reply]

Which version summarized?[edit]

I removed the last line:

The preceding plot details pertain mainly to the film version of this story. The actual novella differs in some areas.

because it no longer seems to be true. The story described here is that of the novella, not that of the movie. Perhaps someone fixed the article but forgot to remove this line. --Heron 12:53, 14 Sep 2004 (UTC)

The plot outlined here is the movie plot. It is obvious when reading the differences between the novella and the movie in the shawshank redemption movie article. Bigbadbyte 05:05, 4 October 2005 (UTC)[reply]

(2 years later.) But now, clearly, the plot summary is for the novel. Ellsworth 19:50, 19 September 2007 (UTC)[reply]
(3 years later.) This article needs to be monitored, I guess, for the insertion of bits from the movie - or elsewhere: the following, which I just cut, is in neither the book nor (exactly) the movie: The warden finds a Bible and discovers that it has a rock hammer-shaped form in the pages along with the phrase "You were right warden, the answer was here". Ellsworth (talk) 01:20, 29 July 2010 (UTC)[reply]

Dufresne fictional within the context of the story?[edit]

This is my little theory on RHaSR, and it just might be right, but before I post it, I'd like to check others' opinions of it.

My theory is that even within the story, Andy Dufresne does not exist. He is the protagonist of a story written by Red.

This thought came across my mind when I was nearing the end of the story. If I had a copy of the book handy, I'd use the direct quote, but I don't. It was Red talking about finishing a story he calls his own, even though it is also Andy's story. Another quote, near the very end of the story, reaffirmed this concept: "I find I am excited, so excited I can hardly hold the pencil in my trembling hand. I think it is the excitement that only a free man can feel, a free man starting a long journey whose conclusion in uncertain." I looked back through the book, and there are other things, such as the story of a prisoner who made a sculpture while in prison that is currently owned by a governor.

I understand that that's insubstantial evidence. But examine the three other stories in Different Seasons: in the other three, it is undeniable that stories play a large role. In "Apt Pupil", Denker corrupts Todd through his stories of the Holocaust. In "The Body", the story is told by a writer, who is writing about his experience. On a couple occasions during the story, he interjects other stories that he has published. I haven't yet red "The Breathing Method" (I'm going through the stories seasonally), but I've begun it, and it appears to include storytelling in it too.

There's also the fact that King does seem to use the theme of storytelling rather commonly in his works. I think the most obvious example (of King's books that I've read) would probably be The Dark Tower series.

Anyways, give me your thoughts.

I would say that is a very apt insight. Someone should try to find an essay or review of the novella that makes this same point so it could be used in the article, perhaps the beginning of a section devoted to themes, etc. RoyBatty42 18:45, 16 January 2007 (UTC)[reply]

While it is good and well to have your own ideas, unless you have a quote(s) from the author, something like this should not be included in the article.--Sadistic monkey 02:17, 24 February 2007 (UTC)[reply]

Thats a rather interesting theory. I've just finished wathcing the movie and read the book a few years ago and never thought Andy could be part of Reds' story...I have to write an essay on the friendships in prisons with regard to the film...any points? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 13:09, 10 September 2007 (UTC)[reply]

Cultural reference[edit]

This line of discussion is completely unrelated to the above questions, but at one point in the story, when Andy is first discussing with Red where he wishes to go if he gets out of prison, is a small town in Mexico near the Pacific ocean. He states that the people of Mexico "say [the ocean] has no memory." This line is particularly intriguing to me, both from the symbolic and cultural aspects, but I can find no references stating that this is true. King almost always uses bits of cultural truths in his books, but for this I can find no basis in fact.

Please type any knowledge you have on any subjects posted here, and please forgive my posting etiquette, I dearly need a course on it, so if you have any tips, please tell me. Thanks.

Count of Monte Cristo[edit]

I changed the text. I don't really think the novella piece is a modernization of the Count of Monte Cristo--oh, there are some notable similarities, but the fine plot details are a lot different--there's a lot more action in the Count of Monte Cristo. Olin 22:55, 20 March 2006 (UTC)[reply]

I think that entire bit of trivia could be taken out, as the only thing the two have in common is two wrongfully imprisoned men who stage ingenius escapes. I think someone might have put it in there because in the movie, Dufresne gives the book to someone joking "Oh, you'll like it - it's about a prison break." RoyBatty42 18:45, 16 January 2007 (UTC)[reply]

Big Difference[edit]

It states in this article that Tommy is killed by Norton after he says his story is true. This only happens in the movie. In the novella he gets transferred.

This difference is clearly listed in "Differences between the Book and film" in the film article. --Sadistic monkey 02:21, 24 February 2007 (UTC)[reply]

Apt Pupil[edit]

Doesn't Andy get a mention in this story? --Charlesknight 23:09, 23 September 2006 (UTC)[reply]

Yes, as the banker who helped Dussander transfer his ill-gotten gains into the United States. Dussander says he rememebers Andy because "his name sounds a little like mine" and also that Andy was imprisoned for killing his wife. Ellsworth 23:37, 7 September 2007 (UTC)[reply]

It reference[edit]

Under "Allusions in other works" someone had listed the novel It without citing the specific allusion as the other works have, so I removed it. Guess someone could add a generic "There is also a reference to Shawshank in the novel It."

BTW - Not sure if the word "allusion" is the proper one, if you want to split hairs. An allusion is generally not a direct reference, but something indirectly or implied. RoyBatty42 18:35, 16 January 2007 (UTC)[reply]

I believe that Shawshank Prison is mentioned somewhere in the novel It.

Chris122990 (talk) 04:41, 6 April 2009 (UTC)[reply]

Red's Self-Imposed Title[edit]

In the movie, Red calls himself "a regular Sears and Roebuck", but in the book he uses a different title. I can't remember what it is and I don't have access to the book. Can someone fix this?

Dbrown123 (talk) 17:20, 23 May 2008 (UTC)[reply]

Unsourced "inspiration"[edit]

Removed this:

The novella was inspired by the real story of John McVicar's escape from the special wing of Durham prison.

There is no source for this either here or on McVicar's page as well. RoyBatty42 (talk) 02:10, 9 July 2008 (UTC)[reply]

Reference in Runescape[edit]

There is a reference in the game Runescape to this story, which I think should be added somewhere.

This is the reference: In the new Stronghold of Safety, there is a jail. If a person walks into the jail, then walks into the only open cell, they will see a poster, a cot, and the door to the cell. If one uses the "Examine" choice on the cot, it says "It looks like someone made this chess set with this tiny rock hammer." In addition, if one "Examine"s the poster, it says that it is "A Grubinch Pin-up. Eww."

Chris122990 (talk) 01:35, 12 July 2008 (UTC)[reply]

It can't be a reference if Runescape is a game that was made AFTER the book was written. So shut up and go back to slaying virtual goblins you fool.

BillC15 (talk) 12:45, 31 March 2009 (UTC)[reply]

Do you realize what you just said? You're implying that the book references RuneScape, which it does not. The game references the book. I believe that you are the fool.

Chris122990 (talk) 04:22, 6 April 2009 (UTC)[reply]

Linda Ronstadt???[edit]

In the "differences between the novella and movie" section, it says he used a poster of Linda Ronstadt to escape in the novella, and Raquel Welsh in the film. Now, I haven't read the novella, but isn't it called "Rita Hayworth and Shawshank Redemption" because Rita Hayworth was on the poster? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 01:49, 19 July 2008 (UTC)[reply]

Rita is on the first poster. Andy replaces them through the years (presumably at night). (talk) 20:03, 3 September 2008 (UTC)[reply]


This article needs a section devoted to the friggin' themes of the novel! —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 04:36, 1 April 2009 (UTC)[reply]

Red's "heritage"[edit]

Why couldnt he be irish? I know he is joking in the context of the movie, but the articles asurance that he can't possible be irish just because he's african american is rediculous. One parent could be. Even back then. So, it seems like a pointless statement to have it in there for no reason that he can't possibly under any circumstances be irish. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:01, 4 May 2009 (UTC)[reply]

'Red' is a typical nickname for mixed-race people eg. Malcolm X was nicknamed 'Red' due to his mother's white ancestors. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:34, 7 January 2014 (UTC)[reply]

In the film at least, Red is probably derived from his last name (his full name is Ellis Boyd Redding). Ollieinc (talk) 04:51, 24 March 2014 (UTC)[reply]

The Play[edit]

No mention of the play based on both the book and the movie (i.e. it takes elements of both). —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 12:03, 15 June 2009 (UTC)[reply]

Andy's prisoner number[edit]

In the movie Andy's number is 37927 —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 22:25, 18 June 2009 (UTC)[reply]

This article is broadcast from where it is considered core content[edit]

Just a random observation that people may want to take into account before they decide the article is longer than the topic warrants. The purpose of outernet is to get information around internet censorship so this might be the only exposure that someone has to the story. Just saying. Elinruby (talk) 22:20, 16 October 2014 (UTC)[reply]

Big Plot Overhaul[edit]

I have just made a major update to the Plot section. I hadn't meant to make so many changes in a single edit, but I kept finding more little mistakes, or timeline references that were wrong. I wrote every change with the text of the novella right there, and triple-checked every detail that I fixed. I also added in some dates which I thought were helpful to keeping the passing of time accurate. For example, the final section of the plot stated that Red spent months looking for the hay field in Buxton, but the text of the short-story say specifically that he started looking in "early April of 1977" and he found it on April 23rd. He further tells us that he's writing that last chapter in May of 1977. So, obviously he didn't spend months looking for the field. It was also originally stated that Red received the postcard from Andy a few weeks after his escape, and was paroled a short time after that. But again the text specifies that Andy went missing on March 12th of 1975, Red received the postcard on September 15, 1975, and he was paroled in March of 1977

I also cleaned up language that gave mistaken impressions, such as saying he "wandered around" looking for the field. That's not implied or stated explicitly in the text. He says he "walked the roads" and that there was a "fool's errand" to the search, given the number of fields he had to search. But it's never implied he had no method to his searching or just haphazardly wandered - and the fact that he found it in a few weeks does imply he made some efforts to be systematic in his search.

Also, it is stated quite clearly that the final poster on Andy's wall, the one the hole was found behind by the warden, was of Linda Ronstadt. In fact, here's the passage that tells us both that it was Linda, and that it was not Raquel, at the end.

"In 1966 that one came down and Raquel Welch went up for a record breaking six-year engagement in Andy's cell. The last poster to hang there was a pretty country-rock singer whose name was Linda Ronstadt."

Other fixes were things like, the Bogs Diamond stuff happens before the roof-tarring bits. Also someone had put in that Andy was presumed drowned, and I quadruple-checked that wasn't in the text. I opted to quote the novella in calling McNary a "tiny town," since technically McNary isn't an incorporated town at all. Though oddly, neither is Fort Hancock, TX, where the film chose to suggest Andy crossed the border, which is literally 6 minutes away from McNary. And neither has a bus station itself, as best I can tell, so I can't figure out the reason for that change right now. But given that both Wikipages for McNary, Fort Hancock and Zihuatanejo all list their relationship to the book/film of Shawshank, I thought it was important that the choice of King to specify McNary should be noted on the Novella's page.

I also felt like it was really missing a key element, that nowhere was it mentioned that the entire plot is being told by Red, who decided to write down the tale after getting Andy's postcard, and then later added to it when he found Andy's letter in the field. This was particularly the case where it was suggested that Andy had latched onto the idea that Blatch could've mixed up a 'hotshot' banker with a lawyer - when Red simply explains that inconsistency and the possible explanation, and he never says if that was an explanation Andy suggested or championed. So, I went to the page for the It_(novel), looking to see if there was some mention of the odd narrative style of that story. I found an italic mention of the fact that the plot was written out in linear fashion, but in the actual story it jumps around between the timelines. So, I chose to use the same convention for mentioning Red's narration of this story. I tried for what was the most accurate and least clunky of methods to do this, but I admit it's still a bit clunky. If anyone has any ideas for smoothing that out, please give a shout.

I think that's most of it. If I missed documenting any changes whose reasoning was unclear, please let me know. I'll be happy to clarify, as each choice was quite deliberately - even to balancing the use of present and past-tense, which can be tricky in a narrative that is told this way. CleverTitania (talk) 11:25, 12 February 2019 (UTC)[reply]

I found one thing I should've noted. Before my edits, the opening line of the plot summary was, "In 1947, in Maine, Andy Dufresne, a banker, is tried and convicted for the double murder of his wife and her lover, despite his claims of innocence." I didn't change the text itself, only the year. In the novella, Red says... "If I had been on the jury that heard his case in Portland Superior Court over six stormy weeks in 1947-48, I would have voted to convict, too." So, while the trial obviously did begin in 1947, if the sentence is structured as "tried and convicted," it should say 1948 - because that's the only year in which both of those things happened. It could obviously be changed to reflect that the murders and some part of the trial took place in 1947, but unless that opening is restructured, the correct year on it should read 1948. CleverTitania (talk) 11:38, 12 February 2019 (UTC)[reply]
After a search, Norton discovers that the poster pasted to Andy’s cell wall covers a man-sized hole
Who is Norton? 2A00:23C4:4641:2801:C07E:3D26:98E:E095 (talk) 07:38, 15 November 2022 (UTC)[reply]

Where's "the?"[edit]

The name of the story is "Rita Hayworth and the Shawshank Redemption." Why is that not the title? (talk) 09:39, 3 June 2020 (UTC)[reply]

It's Rita Hayworth and the Shawshank Redemption in the original Different Seasons collection, and Rita Hayworth and Shawshank Redemption in the standalone publication of the novella. To add to the confusion Amazon drops or includes the "the" in different parts of its description of Different Seasons. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 14:40, 7 December 2020 (UTC)[reply]

Some people have been including a "the" in the story's name since 1982, but I doubt the story has ever been published with one in the name. There's a picture of the contents page of a 1982 U.S. hardback on Amazon, and that doesn't include a "the".[1]


  1. ^ "81LZK52IvkL._SL1500_.jpg". Archived from the original on 2 December 2023. Retrieved 2 December 2023.