- article: Reassessing the Saul Bass and Alfred Hitchcock Collaboration
- author(s): Pat Kirkham
- journal: West 86th (01/Mar/2011)
- issue: volume 18, issue 1, pages 50-85
- DOI: 10.1086/659384
- journal ISSN: 2153-5531
- keywords: "Alfred Hitchcock and the Making of Psycho" - by Stephen Rebello, "Hitchcock at Work" - by Bill Krohn, "Hitchcock: The Making of a Reputation" - by Robert E Kapsis, "Hitchcock: The Murderous Gaze" - by William Rothman, "The Dark Side of Genius: The Life of Alfred Hitchcock" - by Donald Spoto, "The Moment of Psycho: How Alfred Hitchcock Taught America to Love Murder" - by David Thomson, Academy Awards, Alfred Hitchcock, American Film Institute, Bernard Herrmann, Bill Krohn, Blackmail (1929), British Film Institute, Charlotte Chandler, Chicago, Illinois, Dan Auiler, David Sterritt, David Thomson, Donald Spoto, Famous Players-Lasky, François Truffaut, George Tomasini, Grace Kelly, Gregory Peck, Helen Scott, Herbert Coleman, Herman Citron, Hilton A. Green, Ivor Montagu, Janet Leigh, John Ferren, John Gavin, Joseph Stefano, Kim Novak, Margaret Herrick Library, Martin Scorsese, Michael Eaton, Miklós Rózsa, New York City, New York, North by Northwest (1959), Paramount Pictures, Pat Kirkham, Philip J. Skerry, Psycho (1960) - The Shower Scene, Psycho (1960), Robert Bloch, Robert E. Kapsis, Robin Wood, Salvador Dalí, Saul Bass, Sidney Bernstein, Sight and Sound, Spellbound (1945), Stephen Rebello, The Lodger: A Story of the London Fog (1927), Torn Curtain (1966), Vera Miles, Vertigo (1958), William Rothman
Drawing upon a wide range of sources, including interviews with designer and filmmaker Saul Bass (1920–96) and film director Billy Wilder (1906–2002), this article reassesses the evidence, scholarship, and debates about the contributions made by Bass to three films directed by Alfred Hitchcock (1899–1980). Between 1958 and 1960 Bass created main title sequences for Vertigo (1958), North by Northwest (1959), and Psycho (1960) and an advertising campaign for Vertigo, and he also acted as a “pictorial consultant” for Psycho (a role that included the design and storyboarding of the now-famous shower scene). The article, which seeks to reopen and redirect certain debates, constitutes a major evaluation of one of the most visually productive collaborations in the history of U.S. cinema.