Springfield, Ill. —
Hollywood meets history in Springfield March 30 through May 5 as props from the new historical drama The Conspirator, produced and directed by Robert Redford, will be displayed in the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Museum.
The film about the trial of a woman accused of being part of the planning for the Lincoln assassination opens in theaters April 15, the 146th anniversary of Lincoln’s death. It stars Robin Wright as Mary Surratt, the woman on trial; James McAvoy as her attorney; and Kevin Kline as Secretary of War Edwin Stanton.
The film production company is hosting a private screening of the film at the Presidential Museum for a select audience prior to its nationwide release.
The Conspirator takes viewers into the terror-filled mystery of the Lincoln assassination and who was responsible for it. Was Mary Surratt, who kept a boarding house where John Wilkes Booth and some accomplices stayed, guilty enough that she deserved to be hanged by the U.S. government alongside three men directly involved in the brutal crimes? The movie follows her military, rather than civilian, trial and raises questions about the rule of law in times of national conflict, a theme that has parallels today.
The Presidential Museum will display a re-creation of The Conspirator hanging scene at the Old Arsenal Penitentiary, complete with six reproduction artifacts used in making the film: The pistol and spurs used by John Wilkes Booth (actor Toby Kebbell); a saber worn by a general on the military commission that judged Mrs. Surratt; two sets of manacles and two sets of ball and chain, all made of composite plastic for actor comfort; and two prisoners’ hoods.
Paid Museum admission is required to see the movie props.
For more information about ALPLM programs and events, visit www.presidentlincoln.org.