Alfred Hitchcock: 10 quotes on his birthday

Alfred Hitchcock, pioneer in the creation of the thriller movie genre, was born on in London on August 13, 1899. A brief stay in a jail cell at age five, when sent to the police station by his father for behaving badly, seems to have left its mark on Hitchcock, whose fascination with situations in which an individual is wrongly accused and unfairly treated is frequently evidenced in his films. After receiving a degree in electrical engineering from the University of London, Hitchcock soon realized he wanted to work as a filmmaker. In 1923 he began writing scenes for the Gainsborough Film Studios. By 1925 he had directed The Lodger, and Blackmail in 1930. Hitchcock moved to Hollywood in 1939 to pursue his career. His most well recognized films are I Confess (1953), Rear Window (1954), To Catch a Thief (1955), The Trouble With Harry (1956), The Man who Knew Too Much (1956), Vertigo and North by Northwest (1959). Hitchcock’s films generally center on the theme of an ordinary person caught up in circumstances beyond his or her control. Psycho (1960) was Hitchcock’s most horrifying and controversial film, and its most famous scene has succeeded for decades in making its viewers wary of taking showers alone. 

1.A good film

Photo: by Fred Palumbo, Library of Congress

"A good film is when the price of the dinner, the theatre admission and the babysitter were worth it."

Luck is everything

Photo: Japanese book "Showa History Vol.14," published by Mainichi Newspapers Company. Public Domain.

"Luck is everything... My good luck in life was to be a really frightened person. I'm fortunate to be a coward, to have a low threshold of fear, because a hero couldn't make a good suspense film."


Photo: Psycho trailer, Public Domain

"Self-plagiarism is style."

My fears

Photo: The Wrong Man trailer, Public Domain

"The only way to get rid of my fears is to make films about them."


Photo: Vertigo, AP

“There is no terror in the bang, only in the anticipation of it.”

The director

Photo: Hitchcock Studio Publicity, Public Domain

“In feature films the director is God; in documentary films God is the director."


Photo: Strangers On A Train trailer, Public Domain

“What is drama but life with the dull bits cut out.”


Photo: North by Northwest, CSM print file handout

“Seeing a murder on television can help work off one's antagonisms. And if you haven't any antagonisms, the commercials will give you some.”

How to please an audience

Photo: Rear Window, Universal Pictures

“Give them pleasure – the same pleasure they have when they wake up from a nightmare.”

The police

Photo: To Catch A Thief, Paramount Picture Corp.

"I'm not against the police; I'm just afraid of them."