Alfred Hitchcock on Music in Films (Cinema Quarterly, 1933)

Reproduced from the Winter 1933-34 issue of Cinema Quarterly. ALFRED HITCHCOCK on MUSIC IN FILMS In an Interview with STEPHEN WATTS When the British student of intelligent cinema turns to survey the creative side of film-making in his own country the names available for reference are pathetically few. Even ranging over the whole of the talkie’s short history he can probably produce a bare half-dozen, say (alphabetically for safety!) Asquith, Dupont, Grierson, Hitchcock, Korda, and… (read more)

Hitchcock and Orson Welles?!

A surprise from the newspaper archives! I knew Hitchcock was considering several potential projects for Transatlantic Pictures, but this one from the Yorkshire Evening Post (27/Mar/1948) was new to me… Alfred Hitchcock hopes to produce “King Lear” in England, with Orson Welles in the lead. “Hitch” leaves for England early next month to produce “Under Capricorn,” starring Ingrid Bergman. I can’t even begin to imagine how Hitch would have approached filming “King Lear” with Welles!… (read more)

“Charlie Brown is dead”

The Yorkshire Evening Post carried details of the death of Charlie Brown in December 1936. However, this wasn’t the Peanuts cartoon character created by Charles M. Schulz — this was the head carver at the famous Simpson’s in the Strand: Charlie Brown is dead. After working at Simpson’s in the Strand for 59 years he was pensioned off two moths ago (writes the London correspondent of “The Yorkshire Post”). Deprived of his barons of beef… (read more)

Blackmail… Sound or Silent?

Following on from yesterday’s post, here’s another archive clipping about Blackmail (1929) from the Hull Daily Mail (11/Sep/1929)… SOUND v. SILENT FILM VOTE. BERLIN, Tuesday. The first showing in Berlin of the British International Pictures production, “Blackmail,” was used to test the feeling of the public here on the vocal film. The whole work was passed twice across the screen, once with and once without the voices, and the audience, consisting mainly of people connected… (read more)

Hitchcock and Huntingtower

The list of Hitchcock projects that failed to move into production (or even pre-production) is long and relatively well documented. However, I believe this is one which has been missed by Hitchcock scholars — a project to film John Buchan’s Huntingtower. It’s well known that Hitchcock was a fan of Buchan’s novels and he would eventually adapt The Thirty-Nine Steps in 1935. It is also well-known that he considered adapting two other Richard Hanney novels… (read more)

What’s a Hitchcocktail?

Here’s little throwaway piece that appeared in the Aberdeen Evening Express on October 29th, 1952: What’s a Hitchcocktail? Ask Alfred Hitchcock, famous director of a score of thrillers. It’s a beverage made of vodka, brandy and orange juice. “Hitch” calls it “a suspense-drink,” explaining that you can’t tell what’s going to happen until you drink it…

Hitch in the Rear Window Mirror

If I had to give one bit of advice to a Hitchcock newbie, it’d be don’t believe anything you read about Hitchcock… especially anything he said in an interview! ;-) Hitchcock was a man who closely guarded his privacy and was uncomfortable in situations that he couldn’t control, especially with interviewers. For Hitch, this was often a catch-22… he needed publicity for his work, but dreaded intrusive or awkward questions. By the 1950s, he tended… (read more)