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Alfred Hitchcock

Alfred Hitchcock [23]

Born:August 13, 1899
Died:April 29, 1980 (80)
Filmography Rating:6.65 / 10
IMDB Rating:6.91 / 10
Amazon Rating:3.98 / 5
Rotten Tomatoes Rating:87.30%
(Averages are weighted)
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List of Titles and Roles/Jobs:
The Lodger [1926](27) => Director / Writer / Extra in Newspaper Office (uncredited)
Easy Virtue [1926](27) => Director / Man with Stick Near Tennis Court (uncredited)
The Ring [1927](28) => Director / Writer
Champagne [1928](29) => Director / Writer
The Farmer's Wife [1928](29) => Director
Blackmail [1929](30) => Director / Writer / Man on Subway (uncredited)
The Manxman [1929](30) => Director
Juno and the Paycock [1930](31) => Director / Writer
The Skin Game [1931](32) => Director / Writer
Number Seventeen [1932](33) => Director
Rich and Strange [1932](33) => Director / Writer
The Man Who Knew Too Much [1934](35) => Director
The Thirty-Nine Steps [1935](36) => Director / Passerby Near the Bus (uncredited)
Sabotage [1936](37) => Director
Secret Agent [1936](37) => Director
Young and Innocent [1937](38) => Director / Photographer Outside Courthouse (uncredited)
The Lady Vanishes [1938](39) => Director / Man in London Railway Station (uncredited)
Jamaica Inn [1939](40) => Director
Alfred Hitchcock Presents: The Cheney Vase [1955](56) => Himself - Host (uncredited)
North by Northwest [1959](60) => Director / Man Who Misses Bus (uncredited)
Psycho [1960](61) => Director / Man Outside Real Estate Office (uncredited)
Alfred Hitchcock Presents: The Sorcerer's Apprentice [1962](63) => Himself - Host (uncredited)
Alfred Hitchcock: The Legend Begins [2007](108) => Director

Trivia that mentions this person:
The Lady Vanishes [1938]
  • François Truffaut claimed this movie was his favorite Hitchcock and the best representation of Alfred Hitchcock's work.
    The Manxman [1929]
  • Alfred Hitchcock's last silent film.
    The Thirty-Nine Steps [1935]
  • Director Cameo: Alfred Hitchcock about seven minutes in, tossing some litter as Richard and Annabella run from the music hall.
  • Madeleine Carroll suffered at the hands of Alfred Hitchcock's quest for realism, right down to the real welts on her wrists from the long days of being handcuffed to Robert Donat.
  • One day on the set Alfred Hitchcock handcuffed Robert Donat and Madeleine Carroll together and pretended for several hours to have lost the key.
    Secret Agent [1936]
  • Alfred Hitchcock reflected (regarding John Gielgud's lack of heroics): "You can't root for a hero who doesn't want to be one."
  • Alfred Hitchcock convinced John Gielgud to play the lead by describing the hero as a modern day Hamlet. Gielgud, however, ended up hating that his character was an enigma and felt Hitchcock made the villain more charming than the hero.
    Blackmail [1929]
  • Much of the film was originally shot silent; when sound became available during the course of shooting, director Alfred Hitchcock re-shot certain scenes with sound, thus making it the Master of Suspense's first talkie. There was one complication with this change, however. Leading lady Anny Ondra had a thick German accent which was inappropriate to her character, Alice White. Joan Barry was chosen to provide a different voice for her, but post-production dubbing technology did not exist then. The solution was for Barry to stand just out of shot and read Alice's lines into a microphone as Ondry mouthed them in front of the camera. This is generally acknowledged as the first instance of one actor's voice being dubbed by another, even though the word "dub" is technologically inappropriate in this case.
  • Alfred Hitchcock filmed the silent version with Sam Livesey as the Chief Inspector, but when filming the sound version replaced Livesey with Harvey Braban.
  • Director Cameo: Alfred Hitchcock being bothered by a small boy on the underground.
  • The light levels in the British Museum were insufficient to allow Hitchcock to film the final chase scene in the museum. Without informing the producer, Alfred Hitchcock used the Schufftan process (developed by German cinematographer [?] Eugen Schüfftan). This involved taking still photos of the interior of the museum, then reflecting the photos in a mirror with certain parts of the silvering of the mirror scraped away to allow people (entering a door, for example) to be filmed through the mirror so that they appeared to be present in the museum (in later years, American development of traveling matte and other process photography methods largely replaced the Shufftan process).
  • [?] Michael Powell claims to have suggested the use of The British Museum as the location for the final pursuit, thus beginning Alfred Hitchcock's use of famous landmarks in his "chase" films.
    Jamaica Inn [1939]
  • This was the last movie that Alfred Hitchcock made in England before going to Hollywood under contract to [?] David O. Selznick.
  • Alfred Hitchcock made no cameo appearance in this movie.
  • Was reportedly one of Alfred Hitchcock's most unhappy directing jobs. He felt caught between Charles Laughton and Laughton's business partners. Later, he said that he did not so much direct the film as referee it.
    The Lodger [1926]
  • Alfred Hitchcock wanted an ambiguous ending to the film, but the studio wouldn't allow it to be implied that the lodger might actually be the murderer.
  • Director Cameo: Alfred Hitchcock a desk in the newsroom early in the film. Some people claim he also appears later in the crowd lynch scene.
  • Hitchcock told François Truffaut that, though he had made two films prior to this, he considered this his first true film. This is the earliest film directed by Alfred Hitchcock that survives today in its entirety.
  • For the opening scene, where the Avenger's murder victim faces the camera and screams, Alfred Hitchcock filmed the scene by having the actress lie down on a large sheet of glass, with her golden hair spread out around her head. He then lit the actress from underneath the sheet of glass, and filmed her with a camera mounted on its side, with the lens pointed at a downward angle. This gave the appearance that the actress's hair (with its golden curls, so important to the murderer) was ringed in a halo of light.
  • For the opening of the film, Alfred Hitchcock wanted to show the Avenger's murder victim being dragged out of the Thames River at night with the Charing Cross Bridge in the background. But Scotland Yard refused his request to film at the bridge. Hitchcock repeated his request several times, until Scotland Yard notified him that they would "look the other way" if he could do the filming in one night. Hitchcock quickly sent his cameras and actors out to Charing Cross Bridge to film the scene. But when the rushes came back from the developers, the scene at the bridge was nowhere to be found. Hitchcock and his assistants searched through the prints, but could not find it. Finally, Hitchcock discovered that his cameraman had forgotten to put the lens on the camera before filming the night scene.
  • This is the first film directed by Alfred Hitchcock in which he makes one of his trademark cameo appearances. The cameo as an extra came by accident when he didn't have enough people for extras in a scene, he decided to help by appearing in the scene himself. As a result, he decided to turn his appearance into one of his trademarks with him performing silent walk-on bits in most of his later films appearing as uncredited extras.
    Sabotage [1936]
  • Based on Joseph Conrad's novel The Secret Agent, this sports a different title as Alfred Hitchcock's previous film was called Secret Agent, which was based on stories by W. Somerset Maugham.
  • Some critics objected to the way Alfred Hitchcock chose to end the sequence involving the delivery of the bomb on the bus. Hitchcock, stung by the criticism, is said to have regretted his decision. Nonetheless, the treatment is faithful to Joseph Conrad's book.
    Number Seventeen [1932]
  • This was Alfred Hitchcock's last film as director for British International Pictures, though he made one more film for them as producer: Lord Camber's Ladies, directed by [?] Benn W. Levy.
  • Alfred Hitchcock did not want to make this film. He had wanted to direct a prestige production of John Van Druten's play "London Wall," but to punish Hitchcock for the financial failure of his previous film East of Shanghai, British International Pictures head John Maxwell took him off London Wall and put him on Number Seventeen instead. Hitchcock himself has referred to the film as "a terrible picture ... very cheap melodrama".
    The Man Who Knew Too Much [1934]
  • The crucial cantata for the [?] Albert Hall sequence was composed specifically for the film by Arthur Benjamin, and the same piece was used again in the 1956 remake. When Alfred Hitchcock remade the movie, he offered composer Bernard Herrmann the opportunity to compose a new work for the scene, but Herrmann chose not to, citing an appreciation of Benjamin's original cantata.
  • The dentist scene in this film was originally intended to take place in a barber shop. However, Alfred Hitchcock saw the film I Am a Fugitive from a Chain Gang, in which there is a scene exactly like it, so he changed it to a dentist's office. The film was originally intended to be another film in the Bulldog Drummond series entitled Bulldog Drummond's Baby. However, Alfred Hitchcock and writer Charles Bennett did not get the rights to use the Drummond name.
  • When Peter Lorre arrived in Great Britain, his first meeting with a British director was with Alfred Hitchcock. By smiling and laughing as Hitchcock talked, the director was unaware that Lorre had a limited command of the English language. Hitchcock cast him in The Man Who Knew Too Much. Lorre learned much of his part phonetically.
    The Ghost and Mr. Chicken [1966]
  • Contrary to some belief, the exterior of the Simmons house was not the same one built for Alfred Hitchcock's Psycho. The Simmons house is a different facade located between the Delta House and the Munsters house on Colonial Street on Universal's back lot. The camera pans across the Munster house at the beginning of the movie with the credits.
    Resident Evil: Extinction [2007]
  • The crows sitting on power lines and attacking in large numbers pays homage to Alfred Hitchcock's movie The Birds.
    From Russia with Love [1963]
  • Years earlier, Alfred Hitchcock was originally considered as director, with James Bond being played by Cary Grant and [?] Grace Kelly lured out of retirement to play Tatiana Romanova. These ideas were scrapped after Vertigo failed at the box office. The helicopter chase scene is a homage to Hitchcock's cropduster sequence in North by Northwest.
    North by Northwest [1959]
  • This movie is the culmination of one of Sir Alfred Hitchcock's favorite plot devices, of concluding the plot with a hair-raising fall from a great height. His other movies to end this way are Murder! (1930), Jamaica Inn (1939), Foreign Correspondent (1940), Saboteur (1942), Rear Window (1954), and Vertigo (1958).
  • Sir Alfred Hitchcock came up with the ending innuendo of the train entering the tunnel. He considered it one of his finest, naughtiest achievements. Ernest Lehman's screenplay just ended with "the train heads off into the distance", or words to that effect. "There's no way I can take credit for (the tunnel)", Lehman said, adding: "Dammit."
  • Alfred Hitchcock cameo: man arriving at a bus stop during the opening credits, but getting there a second too late and the door is closed in his face. He misses the bus.
  • Often thought of as the best amongst Sir Alfred Hitchcock's "wrong man" thrillers.
  • Sir Alfred Hitchcock considered Elizabeth Taylor for the role of Eve Kendall.
  • Sir Alfred Hitchcock and Ernest Lehman considered Yul Brynner for the role of Phillip Vandamm.
  • MGM wanted Sir Alfred Hitchcock to cast Cyd Charisse for the part of Eve Kendall, but Hitchcock insisted upon Eva Marie Saint.
  • MGM wanted Gregory Peck to star as Roger O. Thornhill, but Sir Alfred Hitchcock refused, claiming that he was too stone-faced.
  • Sir Alfred Hitchcock wanted [?] Grace Kelly for the role of Eve Kendall, even though she was Princess of Monaco.
  • According to the book "Haunted Idol: The Story of the Real Cary Grant" by [?] Geoffrey Wansell, Cary Grant wanted [?] Sophia Loren to play the part of Eve Kendall, but she turned the role down. [?] Sophia Loren played a role very similar to Eve Kendall in Stanley Donen's Sir Alfred Hitchcock-inspired thriller "Arabesque (1966)" opposite Gregory Peck, "MGM"'s original choice for the role of Roger Thornhill.
  • Sir Alfred Hitchcock planned to shoot a scene in the Ford automobile plant in Dearborn, Michigan. As Thornhill and a factory worker discussed a particular foreman at the plant, they would walk along the assembly line as a car was put together from the first bolt to the final panel. Then, as the car rolled off the line ready to drive, Thornhill would open the passenger door and out would roll the body of the foreman he had just been discussing. Hitchcock loved the idea of a body appearing out of nowhere, but he and Screenwriter Ernest Lehman couldn't figure out a way to make the scene fit the story, so it never came to fruition. A similar scene is seen in Minority Report (2002).
  • In François Truffaut's book-length interview, Hitchcock/Truffaut (1967), Sir Alfred Hitchcock said that MGM wanted this movie cut by fifteen minutes so its length would run under two hours. Hitchcock had his agent check his contract, learned that he had absolute control over the final cut, and refused.
  • It was journalist [?] Otis L. Guernsey, Jr. who suggested to Sir Alfred Hitchcock the premise of a man mistaken for a nonexistent secret agent. He was inspired, he said, by a real-life case during World War II, known as Operation Mincemeat, in which British intelligence hoped to lure Italian and German forces away from Sicily, a planned invasion site. A cadaver was selected and given an identity and phony papers referring to invasions of Sardinia and Greece. The Man Who Never Was (1956) recounted the operation.
  • The day before the scene where Thornhill is hidden in an upper berth was to be filmed, Cary Grant took a look at the set which had been built and told Sir Alfred Hitchcock that it had been constructed sloppily and would not do for the movie. Hitchcock trusted Grant's judgment so completely, that he ordered the set rebuilt to better standards without ever checking the situation for himself.
  • Cary Grant found the screenplay baffling, and midway through filming told Sir Alfred Hitchcock, "It's a terrible script. We've already done a third of the picture and I still can't make head nor tail of it!" Hitchcock knew this confusion would only help the movie after all, Grant's character had no idea what was going on, either. Grant thought the movie would be a flop right up until its premiere, where it was rapturously received.
  • Sir Alfred Hitchcock filmed Cary Grant's entrance into the United Nations building from across the street with a hidden camera. When he gets to the top of the stairs, a man about to walk down does a double take upon seeing the movie star.
  • Rather than go to the expense of shooting in a South Dakota woodland, Sir Alfred Hitchcock planted one hundred ponderosa pines on an MGM soundstage.
  • While filming "Vertigo (1958)," Sir Alfred Hitchcock described some of the plot of this project to frequent Hitchcock leading man and "Vertigo" star James Stewart, who naturally assumed that Hitchcock meant to cast him in the Roger Thornhill role, and was eager to play it. Actually, Hitchcock wanted Cary Grant to play the role. By the time Hitchcock realized the misunderstanding, Stewart was so anxious to play Thornhill that rejecting him would have caused a great deal of disappointment. So Hitchcock delayed production on this movie until Stewart was already safely committed to filming Otto Preminger's "Anatomy of a Murder (1959)" before "officially" offering him the role in this movie. Stewart had no choice. He had to turn down the offer, allowing Hitchcock to cast Grant, the actor he had wanted all along.
    Psycho [1960]
  • Sir Alfred Hitchcock tested the fear factor of Mother's corpse by placing it in Janet Leigh's dressing room and listening to how loud she screamed when she discovered it there.
  • One of the reasons Sir Alfred Hitchcock shot the movie in black-and-white was he thought it would be too gory in color. But the main reason was that he wanted to make the movie as inexpensively as possible (under one million dollars). He also wondered if so many bad, inexpensively made, black-and-white "B" movies did so well at the box-office, what would happen if a really good, inexpensively made, black-and-white movie was made.
  • Sir Alfred Hitchcock wanted to make this movie so much that he deferred his standard $250,000 salary in lieu of 60% of the movie's gross. Paramount Pictures, believing that this movie would do poorly at the box office, agreed. His personal earnings from this movie exceeded $15 million. Adjusted for inflation, that amount would be just over $120 million in 2016 dollars.
  • The reason Sir Alfred Hitchcock cameos so early in the movie was because he knew people would be looking out for him, and he didn't want to divert their attention away from the plot.
  • When Norman first realizes there has been a murder, he shouts, "Mother! Oh God! God! Blood! Blood!" Sir Alfred Hitchcock had the bass frequencies removed from Anthony Perkins' voice to make him sound more like a frightened teenager.
  • In the opening scene, Marion Crane is wearing a white bra because Sir Alfred Hitchcock wanted to show her as being "angelic". After she has taken the money, the following scene has her in a black bra because now she has done something wrong and evil. Similarly, before she steals the money, she has a white purse. After she's stolen the money, her purse is black.
  • For a shot looking up into the water stream of the shower head, Sir Alfred Hitchcock had a six-foot-diameter shower head made up and blocked the central jets so that the water sprayed in a cone past the camera lens, without any water spraying directly at it.
  • Director Sir Alfred Hitchcock bought the rights to the novel anonymously from Robert Bloch for only $9,000. He then bought up as many copies of the novel as he could, to keep the ending a secret.
  • Director Sir Alfred Hitchcock originally envisioned the shower sequence as completely silent, but Bernard Herrmann went ahead and scored it anyway, and upon hearing it, Hitchcock immediately changed his mind.
  • Walt Disney refused to allow Sir Alfred Hitchcock to film at Disneyland in the early 1960s because Hitchcock had made "that disgusting movie, 'Psycho.'"
  • Director Sir Alfred Hitchcock was so pleased with the score written by Bernard Herrmann that he doubled the composer's salary to $34,501. Hitchcock later said, "Thirty-three percent of the effect of Psycho was due to the music."
  • When the cast and crew began work on the first day, they had to raise their right hands and promise not to divulge one word of the story. Sir Alfred Hitchcock also withheld the ending part of the script from his cast until he needed to shoot it.
  • Sir Alfred Hitchcock received several letters from ophthalmologists who noted that Janet Leigh's eyes were still contracted during the extreme close-ups after her character's death. The pupils of a true corpse dilate after death. They told Hitchcock he could achieve a proper dead-eye effect by using belladonna drops. Hitchcock did so in all of his later movies.
    Quotes From/About Alfred Hitchcock
    Alfred HitchcockThe length of a film should be directly related to the endurance of the human bladder.