Ladies and gentlemen, please do not panic!
Scream for your lives!
I just happened to catch the beginning of “The Tingler” (1959), directed by William Castle this morning and couldn’t help spotting all of the links with Hitchcock! According to his IMDB profile, Castle emulated Hitchcock (by appearing in trailers and by creating a trademark silhouette), but it was the highly succesful low budget “House on Haunted Hill” that, apparently, inspired Hitchcock to make his own low-budget thriller (“Psycho“).
Anyway, back to “The Tingler”…
Portions of the music (written by Von Dexter) from the opening title sequence are so similar to Bernard Herrmann‘s score for “Vertigo” that you’d swear you were listening to the latter. Castle also starts the film with a monologue to camera, in the same style as “Alfred Hitchcock Presents“.
The cast list sees several other links with Hitchcock:
- Judith Evelyn played the role of Miss Lonelyheart in “Rear Window“
- both Darryl Hickman (who was the husband of Pamela Lincoln) and Vincent Price appeared in episodes of “Alfred Hitchcock Presents”
- both Philip Coolidge and Patricia Cutts (daughter of Graham Cutts) appeared in “North by Northwest“
Both “The Tingler” and “Psycho” have a famous set-piece scene in a bathroom. Whereas Hitchcock is quoted as saying he filmed “Psycho” in black & white because he didn’t want to see red blood on the screen, Castle shocks the viewer by actually having bright red blood suddenly appear in a black & white film!