The Shawshank Redemption comes to Bromley

Passing by the Churchill Theatre today, I couldn’t help but notice that there’s an upcoming production of The Shawshank Redemption. Or is it of The Shawshank Remption? The poster says it’s based on the short story, the casting suggests the movie.

For those who don’t know, Stephen King’s short story, Rita Heyworth and The Shawshank Redemption, features a character called Red who is a red-haired Irish-American, but who in the movie The Shawshank Redemption is played by Morgan Freeman (a discrepancy acknowledged in a joke line by Freeman). Here, the character is played by Ben Onwukwe. Make up your own mind about what copyright-avoiding trick is going on here…

All the same, not exactly the all-American cast you’d be expecting of either the short story or the movie, with the main cast being the Shakespearean-trained Onwukwe, Paul “EastEnders” Nicholls in the Tim Robbins role and Jack “Prime Suspect Ellis playing the warden. To be fair, Ellis does have form, as I saw him in the West End production of A Few Good Men in the Jack Nicholson role about a decade ago. That featured Rob Lowe as Tom Cruise and a certain ‘John Barrowman’ playing Kevin Bacon, so I guess if it’s good enough for the West End, I guess it’s good enough for Bromley…