Hollywood Magazine (1940) - Hollywood Newsreel (July)
- article: Hollywood Newsreel
- journal: Hollywood Magazine (July 1940)
- issue: volume 29, issue 7, pages 8-9
- journal ISSN:
- publisher: Fawcett Publications, Inc.
- keywords: Alfred Hitchcock, Laurence Olivier
Knowing that the 239-pound Hitchcock was a lover of fine bottled goods for use at gala dinners, Olivier got hold of a prop Napoleon brandy bottle and had the studio laboratory fill it up with a solution of photo developing chemicals. The result of the chemists' endeavors was an evil-smelling and foul tasting concoction unfit to slide down a drain, let alone the throat of a connoisseur.
Some time later Olivier inquired by letter whether Hitchcock had enjoyed the gift. The director, no novice ribber himself wrote back:
"I sent your very kind gift to a desperately sick friend of mine. After drinking some of the brandy he took a sudden turn for the worse."
Olivier was so remorse-stricken that he had to be reassured by wire that Hitchcock had recognized at a distance of thirty paces that the contents of the bottle was not brandy.