Hitchcock on Hitchcock - Selected Writings and Interviews

ISBN-10: 0520212223

ISBN-13: 9780520212220

Edition: 1997

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Description: Gathered here for the first time are Alfred Hitchcock's reflections on his own life and work. In this ample selection of largely unknown and formerly inaccessible interviews and essays, Hitchcock provides an enlivening commentary on a career that spanned decades and transformed the history of the cinema. Bringing the same exuberance and originality to his writing as he did to his films, he ranges from accounts of his own life and experiences to techniques of filmmaking and ideas about cinema in general. Wry, thoughtful, witty, and humorous--as well as brilliantly informative--this selection reveals another side of the most renowned filmmaker of our time. Sidney Gottlieb not only presents some of Hitchcock's most important pieces, but also places them in their historical context and in the context of Hitchcock's development as a director. He reflects on Hitchcock's complicated, often troubled, and continually evolving relationship toward women, both on and off the set. Some of the topics Hitchcock touches upon are the differences between English and American attitudes toward murder, the importance of comedy in film, and the uses and techniques of lighting. There are also many anecdotes of life among the stars, reminiscences from the sets of some of the most successful and innovative films of this century, and incisive insights into working method, film history, and the role of film in society. Unlike some of the complex critical commentary that has emerged on his life and work, the director's own writing style is refreshingly straightforward and accessible. Throughout the collection, Hitchcock reveals a delight and curiosity about his medium that bring all his subjects to life.

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Book details

List price: $31.95
Copyright year: 1997
Publisher: University of California Press
Publication date: 11/4/1997
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 360
Size: 6.25" wide x 9.25" long x 1.00" tall
Weight: 1.100
Language: English

Alfred Hitchcock was born on August 13, 1899 in London, England. He graduated from St. Ignatius College, where he studied engineering, and took art courses at the University of London. He worked briefly as a technical calculator for a cable company, but soon decided to focus on art, becoming an advertising layout draftsman for a London department store. In 1920, he got a job writing and illustrating title cards for silent pictures. He rose quickly, to script writer, art director and assistant director. By 1925, he had become a director, making a melodrama called The Pleasure Garden. In 1929, he directed Blackmail, Britain's first widely successful talking feature. The other movies he directed in England included The Lodger (U.S. title, The Case of Jonathan Drew), The Man Who Knew Too Much, The 39 Steps, and The Lady Vanishes. He was approached by producer David O. Selznick about directing in the United States, and he accepted so he could take advantage of the better-equipped American studios. His first American film, Rebecca, won the Academy Award for best picture. The other movies he directed in the United States included Shadow of a Doubt, Spellbound, Rear Window, Vertigo, Psycho, The Birds, Frenzy, and Family Plot. In 1979, he was awarded the American Film Institute Life Achievement Award. In 1980, he was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II. He died from liver failure and heart problems on April 29, 1980 at the age of 80.

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