In 1975, Whitmore's long-running one-man show about the life and career of Harry Truman, "Give 'Em Hell, Harry," was released on film. He garnered a second Academy Award nod for his performance, marking the first time in Oscar history that an actor was nominated for a solo turn in a film.
Whitmore is best known among younger audiences for his sympathetic portrayal of a prison librarian in The Shawshank Redemption (1994). Later in his career, he won an Emmy for a guest performance on "The Practice" (1999). He died on Feb. 9, 2009, at the age of 87.
Framed for murder, upstanding banker Andy Dufresne begins a new life at Shawshank prison, where he comes to be admired by the other inmates -- including an older prisoner named Red -- for his integrity and unquenchable sense of hope.