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20 Facts You Don’t Know About Alfred Hitchcock

11 December 2012 | Features, Other Lists | by David Zou

Alfred-Hitchcock

As one of the greatest directors in the 20th century, Alfred Hitchcock gained great popularity from his personal appearance in his TV series, movie trailers and interesting cameos. But what else do you know besides he was a fat guy and made great suspense films? More than that, here are 20 facts you should know about Alfred Hitchcock.

1. Hitchcock was a close friend of Albert R. Broccoli, well known as the producer of the James Bond – 007 franchise. Hitchcock’s North by Northwest (1959) was the influence for the helicopter scene in From Russia with Love (1963).

 

2. Alma Reville and Hitch had one daughter, Patricia Hitchcock, who appeared in several of his movies: Stage Fright (1950), Strangers on a Train (1951) and Psycho (1960).

Patricia-Hitchcock

 

3. From 1977 until his death, he worked with a succession of writers on a film to be known as “The Short Night”. The majority of the writing was done by David Freeman, who published the final screenplay after Hitchcock’s death.

 

4. Hitchcock asked writers Pierre Boileau and Thomas Narcejac to write a novel for him after Henri-Georges Clouzot had been faster in buying the rights for “Celle qui n’était plus” which became Diabolique (1955). The novel they wrote, “From Among the Dead”, was shot as Vertigo (1958).

diabolique

 

5. He delivered the shortest acceptance speech in Oscar history: while accepting the Irving Thalberg Memorial Award at the 1967 Oscars, he simply said “Thank you.”

 

6. Destiny (1921) by Fritz Lang was his declared favorite movie.

destiny fritz lang

 

7. In a USC class on Hitchcock (fall of 2000), guest speaker Patricia Hitchcock revealed that two guilty pleasures of Hitch’s were Smokey and the Bandit (1977) and Benji (1974)!

smokey and the bandit

 

8. When he won his Lifetime Achievement award in 1979, he joked with friends that he must be about to die soon. He died a year later.

 

9. Was at his heaviest in the late 1930s, when he weighed over 300 pounds. Although always overweight, he dieted and lost a considerable amount of weight in the early 1950s, with pictures from sets like To Catch a Thief (1955) showing a surprisingly thin Hitchcock. His weight continued to fluctuate throughout his life.

lifeboat

 

10. Directed eight different actors in Oscar-nominated performances: Laurence Olivier, Joan Fontaine, Judith Anderson, Albert Bassermann, Michael Chekhov, Claude Rains, Ethel Barrymore and Janet Leigh. Fontaine won an Oscar for Suspicion (1941).

joan-fontaine-suspicion

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  • http://thevoid99.blogspot.com Steven Flores

    I never knew about any of these. Smokey & the Bandit is not a guilty pleasure. It’s a true classic of American cinema.

    • http://www.tasteofcinema.com/ David Zou

      I looked it up,sounds very popular at that time.

  • http://www.whitecitycinema.com michaelgsmith

    Fascinating little-known facts. I was especially surprised to see the list of Oscar-nominated actors; while Hitchcock directed some of the greatest performances of all-time (an aspect of his career that is under-acknowledged), none of them were the ones that received Oscar nominations!

    • http://www.tasteofcinema.com/ David Zou

      Yeah,that’s really weird.Robert Walker in Stranger on a Train,Margret Lockwood in The Lady Vanishes,Anthony Perkins in Psycho,the list can go on and on.

  • http://eclecticbooksandmovies.blogspot.com/ Stephanie

    I love the Oscar acceptance speech! :-) Brevity is the soul of wit.

    • http://www.tasteofcinema.com/ David Zou

      It’s interesting that he made a very long acceptance speech when he received AFI lifetime achievement award,I will put up the video in my future post.

  • http://moviesandsongs365.blogspot.com/ Chris

    Thanks for compiling the list, David. Didn’t know Hitchcock’s daughter was in a few of his films! I hadn’t thought of that many of Hitchcock’s films have one-word titles. Destiny (1921) by Fritz Lang was his favorite, and that’s one word too ( :

    • http://www.tasteofcinema.com/ David Zou

      Thanks! His daughter also appeared in many DVD extras of Hitch movies. The new movie Hitchcock is one-word title too!

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