9 user 17 critic

Shakespeare Behind Bars (2005)

Not Rated | | Documentary | January 2005 (USA)
Twenty male inmates in a Kentucky prison form an unlikely Shakespearean acting troupe.


Hank Rogerson

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5 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »




Twenty male inmates in a Kentucky prison form an unlikely Shakespearean acting troupe.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis




Not Rated | See all certifications »


Official Sites:

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Release Date:

January 2005 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Shakespeare Atrás das Grades See more »

Filming Locations:

Kentucky, USA See more »


Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$2,347, 31 March 2006

Gross USA:

$48,194, 22 October 2006
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Company Credits

Production Co:

Philomath Films See more »
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Technical Specs



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Did You Know?


References In Living Color (1990) See more »

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User Reviews

A fantastic documentary that everyone should see. Everyone.
21 March 2005 | by Elijah_ChandlerSee all my reviews

My father was the warden of the prison (he is retired now) showcased in this documentary and I've grown up around the prison life, so perhaps my views will be totally different from everyone else who watches this movie. I will say this, the filmmakers who brought us this 93-minute miracle are fantastic artists and even better people. They were brave enough to A) Show up and tell this story, B) Get inside these inmates minds and hearts, and C) Do all of this responsibly. Responsible to their art and, more importantly, responsible to the inmates and staff of Luther Luckett Correctional Complex. They should be commended without end for this work. To take 170 hours, yes HOURS, of footage and be able to cut and whittle it down to 93 riveting minutes is nothing short of extraordinary and they have my utmost respect.

I saw this film under circumstances that only a very, very few were able to see it. I was at the inmate screening. I was in the same room with these men as they watched their hearts being poured out on screen. I saw men crying on television crying in the chair in front of me and let me tell you, it was a very profound experience. These men have committed horrendous crimes in some cases, yet have found ways to try to redeem themselves, even if they view themselves as unredeemable. How many of us have the courage to do this? How many people could do what they have done in such a harsh environment? To see them react to the film was an experience I am eternally grateful for, and I will never forget that. I thank the men who allowed me this glimpse into their lives, I thank my father for making ALL of this possible, and I thank Philomath Films for taking the time to pour their blood, sweat, soul, and tears into this project.

This movie will change everything you think you know about prison life, and the inmates held within it. 'Oz' is not real, television is not real. 'Shakespeare Behind Bars' is.

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