Stephen King never cashed the ‘Shawshank Redemption’ royalty cheque

He did something lovely instead

It’s been revealed that Stephen King never cashed his royalty cheque for the Shawshank Redemption.

Back in the late ’80s, director Frank Darabont purchased the rights to adapt his 1982 novella Rita Hayworth and Shawshank Redemption. Daranont’s adaptation of King’s work went on to secure numerous nominations, including Best Picture and Best Writing, Screenplay Based on Material Previously Produced or Published at the 1995 Oscars.

King was given a $5,000 royalty cheque but in a new profile, the acclaimed author revealed he never cashed it. The Wall Street Journal reveals that King actually gave the cheque back to the director.


“Years after Shawshank came out, the author got the check framed and mailed it back to the director with a note inscribed: ‘In case you ever need bail money. Love, Steve,’” the article reads.

Although the film didn’t bag any Oscars, it’s widely regarded as one of the world’s must-see movies – it currently has a 98% audience score on Rotten Tomatoes.

It’s also one of the highest valued assets in Warner Bros. $1.5 billion library.

Earlier this year, the first trailer for Pet Sematary, the latest film adaptation of a Stephen King novel, was released.

Directed by Starry Eyes filmmakers Kevin Kölsch and Dennis Widmyer, the new film focuses on a doctor (Jason Clarke) and his family as they move from Boston to Maine. On arrival in the rural area, they discover a mysterious burial ground.


After a sudden tragedy, the doctor turns to his neighbour Judd Crandall (John Lithgow) and a series of terrifying events unfolds. The original King novel was published in 1983 and was first adapted into a film in 1988. It’ll be released on April 5, 2019.

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