1. The opening chat between Andy and Red in the yard of the prison, took 9 hours to shoot. Red is pitching a baseball during this scene, causing Morgan Freeman to continue this for 9 hours straight. He didn’t complain though, but he did turn up the next day with a sling on his arm.
2. When Stephen King sold the novella of the movie, it went for a dollar.
4. The original book had Red as a “middle-aged Irishman with graying red hair”, which caused the filmmakers to add in the line “Maybe it’s ’cause I’m Irish” to Red’s dialogue as a joke.
5. The famouse “The Marriage of Figaro” scene, where Andy turns up the music in the prison yard, was completely improved by Robbins. He thought it’d make for a great moment in the film. It did.
6.The Director, Frank Darabont, didn’t want the DVD of the film to contain the deleted scenes, because he didn’t want them public, due to him being embarrassed by them.
7. The Italian title for the movie is “Le ali della libertà”, which means “The Wings of Freedom”.
8. When Warden Norton opens the bible where Andy has hidden his rock pick, it opens to the Book of Exodus. The Book of Exodus details the escape of the Jews from Egypt.
9. The American Humane Association monitored the filming of scenes involving Brooks’ crow. During the scene where he fed it a maggot, the AHA objected on the grounds that it was cruel to the maggot, and required that they use a maggot that had died from natural causes. One was found, and the scene was filmed.
10. The role of Tommy Williams was intended for Brad Pitt.
11. The pictures of the young looking Morgan Freeman attached to his parole papers are actually pictures of Morgan Freeman’s son, Alfonso Freeman.
12. The faeces Andy crawls through in the sewer scene is actually chocolate syrup. Interestingly, a fan who has visited the Mansfield Reformatory, the former prison-became-Shawshank set, noted that a section of that tunnel still smells like chocolate.