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Alfred Hitchcock

born 13/Aug/1899
Leytonstone, London, England
died 29/Apr/1980
Los Angeles, California
director see Filmography


Sir Alfred Joseph Hitchcock KBE was a British film director and producer, a master of the suspense thriller genre. He began directing in the United Kingdom before working mostly in the United States from 1939 onwards, taking out dual citizenship in 1956. He directed more than fifty feature films in a career spanning six decades, from the silent film era, through the invention of talkies, to the color era. Hitchcock remains one of the best known and most popular directors of all time, famous for his expert and largely unrivaled control of pace and suspense throughout his movies.

Hitchcock's films draw heavily on both fear and fantasy, and are known for their droll humour. They often portray innocent people caught up in circumstances beyond their control or understanding. This often involves a transference of guilt in which the "innocent" character's failings are transferred to another character, and magnified. Another common theme is the basic incompatibility of men and women; Hitchcock's films often take a cynical view of traditional romance.

In his time, Hitchcock was far more popular with film audiences than with film critics, especially the elite British and American critics. "Rebecca" was the only one of his films to win the Academy Award for Best Picture, although four others were nominated. Hitchcock never won the Academy Award for Best Director. He was awarded the Irving G. Thalberg Memorial Award for lifetime achievement in 1967, but never personally received an Academy Award of Merit.

The French New Wave critics, especially Éric Rohmer, Claude Chabrol, and François Truffaut, were among the first to see and promote his films as artistic masterworks. Hitchcock was one of the first directors to whom they applied their auteur theory, which stresses the artistic authority of the director in the film-making process.

Through his fame, public persona, high degree of creative control and frequent return to certain favored themes, Hitchcock transformed the role of the director, which had previously been eclipsed by that of the producer. He is seen today as a director who managed to combine art and entertainment in a way very few have ever matched. His innovations and vision have influenced a great number of filmmakers, producers, and actors.

Early Years


See the main Filmography page for further works







See Also...


Film Frames

Selection of film frames: Alfred Hitchcock (click image to view larger version or refresh thumbnails)...

Image Gallery

Images from the Hitchcock Gallery (click to view larger versions or search for all relevant images)...



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