“In real life, to be called ‘melodramatic’ is to be criticized. The term suggests behavior which is hysterical and exaggerated. A woman may receive the news of her husband’s death by throwing up her arms and screaming, or she may sit quite still and say nothing. The first is melodramatic. But it may well happen in real life. In the cinema a melodramatic film is one based on a series of sensational incidents. So melodrama, you must admit, has been and is the backbone and lifeblood of the cinema. I use melodrama because I have a tremendous desire for understatement in film-making. Understatement in a dramatic situation powerful enough to be called melodramatic is, I think, the way to achieve naturalism and realism, while keeping in mind the entertainment demands of the screen, the first of these being for colorful action.” — Alfred Hitchcock in 1937.
“Cary Grant is the only actor I ever loved in my whole life.” — Alfred Hitchcock
“Well, he thought [actors] were stupid, I suppose. He didn’t like arguments, you see: ‘I can’t do it this way,’ ‘I’m not in the mood,’ ‘I don’t understand what you mean’ – that sort of thing. He had this phrase and I’ve always been grateful for what it taught me: he had very clear ideas of how he wanted scenes shot and if you started complaining about the difficulties – like ‘The door’s too narrow for me to come through with this big dress, couldn’t I possibly just stay in the room?’ – he’d sit there as though listening attentively to your problems and then say, ‘Fake it. Go through the door and fake it.’” – Ingrid Bergman, when asked to comment on Alfred Hitchcock’s famous reference about actors being like (or needing to be treated like) cattle.
The photo was taken on the set of Spellbound (1945).
Quote source: John Kobal’s People Will Talk.
“Directors like Hitchcock were confident enough directing on the technical aspects, but they didn’t try to mess with your mind. “ — Kim Novak
Source: Susan King (2004)
Photo: Vertigo (1958). With Kim Novak.
“It’s actually, honestly true. And not because of the shooting of it. It was the seeing of it. It never dawned on me how truly vulnerable we are. But that’s what he did. A shower. A bird. All these things that are absolutely ordinary, he made extraordinary.”— Janet Leigh (on why she avoids taking showers)
“To me, ‘Psycho’ was a big comedy. Had to be.” — Alfred Hitchcock
“One of television’s great contributions is that it brought murder back into the home, where it belongs.” — Alfred Hitchcock in 1966.
Here he is outside of his Bel Air residence at 10957 Bellagio Road in 1961.
“I am scared easily, here is a list of my adrenaline – production: 1: small children, 2: policemen, 3: high places, 4: that my next movie will not be as good as the last one.” — Alfred Hitchcock
“To be the object of somebody’s obsession is a really awful feeling when you can’t return it.” — Tippi Hedren on Alfred Hitchcock
“People enjoy being frightened; scaring hell out of them. A haunted house. A roller coaster. There’s a fine line between screams of excitement people pay money to endure and the screams of real fear. Kids go ‘boo’ and scare the bejeebers out of the other child. It’s as common a practice as there is.” — Alfred Hitchcock
Source: Norman Goldstein (1972)
“Master of Suspense” action figures from Killer Bootlegs.