[118] Eventually, Selznick generously lent Hitchcock to the larger film studios. The villain Bruno in Strangers on a Train hates his father, but has an incredibly close relationship with his mother (played by Marion Lorne). He again used Technicolor in this production, then returned to black-and-white for several years. 1 in its "50 Greatest Directors" list. "[7] Hitchcock made multiple films with some of the biggest stars in Hollywood, including four with Cary Grant in the 1940s and 1950s, three with Ingrid Bergman in the second half of the 1940s, four with James Stewart over a decade commencing in 1948, and three consecutive with Grace Kelly in the mid-1950s. '"[131], Recalling their experiences on Lifeboat for Charles Chandler, author of It's Only a Movie: Alfred Hitchcock A Personal Biography, Walter Slezak said that Hitchcock "knew more about how to help an actor than any director I ever worked with", and Hume Cronyn dismissed the idea that Hitchcock was not concerned with his actors as "utterly fallacious", describing at length the process of rehearsing and filming Lifeboat. [172] In the same year, his third Grace Kelly film, To Catch a Thief, was released; it is set in the French Riviera, and stars Kelly and Cary Grant. [78][79], On 2 December 1926, Hitchcock married the English screenwriter Alma Reville at the Brompton Oratory in South Kensington. [134] He also directed Have You Heard? In the film, two men casually meet, one of whom speculates on a foolproof method to murder; he suggests that two people, each wishing to do away with someone, should each perform the other's murder. (He had the same problem years later with Cary Grant in Suspicion (1941). Increasingly during the mid- 1930s Hitchcock was courted by the Hollywood studios, but he begged off until 1938 when, after his first visit to the Coast, he flnally signed with David O. Selznick to direct five pictures for $800,000. His funeral was held at Good Shepherd Catholic Church in Beverly Hills on 30 April, after which his body was cremated. In 1967, Hitchcock told Truffaut: "I think the most interesting women, sexually, are the English women. The film was the first British "talkie"; this followed the rapid development of sound films in the United States, from the use of brief sound segments in The Jazz Singer (1927) to the first full sound feature Lights of New York (1928). As in the 1934 film, the climax takes place at the Royal Albert Hall. He had wanted Vera Miles to play the lead, but she was pregnant. Selznick suffered from constant financial problems, and Hitchcock was often unhappy about Selznick's creative control and interference over his films. [108] However, producer David O. Selznick offered him a concrete proposal to make a film based on the sinking of RMSTitanic, which was eventually shelved, but Selznick persuaded Hitchcock to come to Hollywood. He is widely regarded as one of the most influential figures in the history of cinema. Soon thereafter Random House, and later Dell in paperback, undertook Issuing popular anthologies with such titles as Alfred Hitchcock Presents Stories My Mother Never Told Me. Stories To Be Read With The Lights On, and Stories That Scared Even Me.. "Hitchcock" redirects here. She applies for a job at Mark Rutland's (Connery) company in Philadelphia and steals from there too. It was reported by Variety at the time that the star died from natural causes, with. She broke down after a bird cut her lower eyelid, and filming was halted on doctor's orders. At the same time, Hitchcock was a man of exceedingly regular habits. [106], By 1938 Hitchcock was aware that he had reached his peak in Britain. Torn Curtain, with Paul Newman and Julie Andrews, precipitated the bitter end of the 12-year collaboration between Hitchcock and composer Bernard Herrmann. However, the moment they became aware of the commercial effects of my belittling, they stopped questioning the propriety of my cracks., The Revue series, on which longtime Hitchcock assistant Joan Harrison served as associate producer, is still in active syndication. Businessman Ralph Cowell (Reed) strangles his silent partner, Alfred Sloane (Delevanti), to death in order to . Strangers, Rear Window, Vertigo, North By Northwest, Psycho and The Birds all stand as masterpieces. Part of the pictures sell consisted of the warning that no one would be admitted after the film began, and the directors appearance in the trailer traded successfully off his now-established tv image. Hitchcock became an American citizen in 1955. [286] The David O. Selznick and the Ernest Lehman collections housed at the Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center in Austin, Texas, contain material related to Hitchcock's work on the production of The Paradine Case, Rebecca, Spellbound, North by Northwest and Family Plot.[287]. By age eight, he had ridden the entire length of every bus line in London and indulged his dreams of travel (which he later fulfllled) by tracking the progress of the British merchant fleet with pins stuck in a world map from information gathered from a dally shipping bulletin. [49] The Times wrote in February 1922 about the studio's "special art title department under the supervision of Mr. A. J. Biographer Stephen Rebello claimed Universal imposed two films on him, Torn Curtain (1966) and Topaz (1969), the latter of which is based on a Leon Uris novel, partly set in Cuba. [101] Starring Nova Pilbeam and Derrick De Marney, the film was relatively enjoyable for the cast and crew to make. Alfred Joseph Hitchcock was born in London, England, on August 13, 1899, and was raised by strict, Catholic parents. and I said, 'A clear horizon. In June 1919, he became a founding editor and business manager of Henley's in-house publication, The Henley Telegraph (sixpence a copy), to which he submitted several short stories. His films live on and hold up well, despite the fact Hitchcock himself passed away in 1980, and his final film was released in 1976. In Topaz, French actresses Dany Robin as Stafford's wife and Claude Jade as Stafford's daughter are blonde heroines, the mistress was played by brunette Karin Dor. Auto mechanic Leo Manfred fixes a limousine owned by Gavin Revere, a famed, retired and wheelchair-bound Hollywood director. [237] Raymond Durgnat opined that Hitchcock's films were carefully and intelligently constructed, but thought they can be shallow and rarely present a "coherent worldview".[238]. On Dec. 31, 1979, Mr. Hitchcock was named Knight Commander of the Order in the British Empire by Queen Elizabeth II. Hitchcock's health was declining and he was worried about his wife, who had suffered a stroke. [116] As well as complaining about Hitchcock's "goddamn jigsaw cutting",[117] their personalities were mismatched: Hitchcock was reserved whereas Selznick was flamboyant. In Rear Window, Lisa (Grace Kelly) risks her life by breaking into Lars Thorwald's apartment. [90], Hitchcock's portrayal of women has been the subject of much scholarly debate. Mr. Hitchock frequently would repeat in later years an incident that he said shaped his thinking. Few scenes have so severely shaken public complacency. He then attended a primary school near his home and was for a short time a boarder at Salesian College in Battersea. By mixing footage of European scenes with scenes filmed on a Hollywood backlot, the film avoided direct references to Nazism, Nazi Germany, and Germans, to comply with the Motion Picture Production Code at the time. His films explored audience as a voyeur, notably in Rear Window, Marnie and Psycho. [71] The film concerns the hunt for a Jack the Ripper-style serial killer who, wearing a black cloak and carrying a black bag, is murdering young blonde women in London, and only on Tuesdays. First surprise was the killing off of a star the magnitude of Janet Leigh so early in the picture, but the manner of her demise sent shocks through critics and viewers and comprised what is undoubtedly the most famous sequence in the Hitchcock canon. Hitchcock later said that his British work was the "sensation of cinema", whereas the American phase was when his "ideas were fertilised". He insisted, without explanation, that her first name be written in single quotation marks: 'Tippi'. When the others learn of his deceptions, they transform into a mob and brutally kill . [72] A landlady suspects that her lodger is the killer, but he turns out to be innocent. I wouldn't dream of retiring; the figure of a birthday is something one ignores. Nonetheless, the early 1930s brought uneven results in such pictures as Blstree Calling, Juno And The Paycock (from the OCasey play), Murder, The Skin Game, Rich And Strange, Number Seventeen and Waltzes From Vienna (or Strauss Great Waltz, his only musical). In THE BIRDS, Alfred Hitchcock's heart-pounding follow-up to PSYCHO, the director couples a tone of rigorous morality with dark humor to create a thriller that begins as a light comedy and ends as an apocalyptic allegory. [271] In 1978, John Russell Taylor described him as "the most universally recognizable person in the world" and "a straightforward middle-class Englishman who just happened to be an artistic genius". Hitchcock died Monday in her sleep at home in Thousand Oaks, California, her daughter Tere Carrubba said Wednesday. [150] Gregory Peck plays amnesiac Dr. Anthony Edwardes under the treatment of analyst Dr. Peterson (Ingrid Bergman), who falls in love with him while trying to unlock his repressed past. For example, if the clapperboard showed Scene 23; Take 3; Hitchcock would whisper "Woodford, Hampstead" Woodford being the terminus of the route 23 tram, and Hampstead the end of route 3. NEW YORK (AP) Patricia Hitchcock O'Connell, the only child of Alfred Hitchcock and an actor herself who made a memorable appearance in her father's "Strangers on a Train" and championed his work in the decades following his death, has died at age 93. [219], Hitchcock returned to Britain to make his penultimate film, Frenzy (1972), based on the novel Goodbye Piccadilly, Farewell Leicester Square (1966). PAT Hitchcock, the daughter of famed Hollywood director Alfred Hitchcock, has died at the age of 93. The English use a lot of imagination with their crimes. [258] In an episode of The Dick Cavett Show, originally broadcast on 8 June 1972, Dick Cavett stated as fact that Hitchcock had once called actors cattle. Farley Granger's role was as the innocent victim of the scheme, while Robert Walker, previously known for "boy-next-door" roles, played the villain. We are given an idea and then we are turned loose to develop in any way we want to.' The full-length version of the film, German Concentration Camps Factual Survey, was restored in 2014 by scholars at the Imperial War Museum. And their names are Alma Reville. [234] In Britain, he honed his craft so that by the time he moved to Hollywood, the director had perfected his style and camera techniques. [221] Biographers have noted that Hitchcock had always pushed the limits of film censorship, often managing to fool Joseph Breen, the head of the Motion Picture Production Code. [31] To support himself and his motherhis older siblings had left home by thenHitchcock took a job, for 15 shillings a week (77 in 2021),[32] as a technical clerk at the Henley Telegraph and Cable Company in Blomfield Street near London Wall. He later said that this is where he developed his sense of fear. Among Mr. Hitchcock's favorite themes was that of the average citizen suddenly and unwittingly capapulated into extraordinary situations over which he had no control. [66] The Ring garnered positive reviews; the Bioscope magazine critic called it "the most magnificent British film ever made". [4] His thrillers The 39 Steps (1935) and The Lady Vanishes (1938) are ranked among the greatest British films of the 20th century. By 1939, he had international recognition and producer David O. Selznick persuaded him to move to Hollywood. The idea was rewritten as a short story by Harry Sylvester and published in Collier's in 1943. In Lifeboat, Hitchcock deliberately confined himself to the smallest possible playing area and invented what was probably the most amusing of his trademark cameo appearances, that of a before-and-after model in a weight reduction newspaper ad. It may be the fact that Hitchcock was the most prominent formalist in Hollywood that accounts for more books and articles having been written about his work than about that of any other screen artist, including an authorized biography by John Russell Taylor published last year. [90] In the PBS series The Men Who Made The Movies, Hitchcock explained how he used early sound recording as a special element of the film, stressing the word "knife" in a conversation with the woman suspected of murder. He compared the interview to "Oedipus' consultation of the oracle". He insisted on punctuality and decorum in his life and work, avoiding confrontations and always proceeding in an orderly, polite manner. Pat Hitchcock, director Alfred Hitchcock 's only child, has died at 93. [174], The Wrong Man (1956), Hitchcock's final film for Warner Bros., is a low-key black-and-white production based on a real-life case of mistaken identity reported in Life magazine in 1953. [265], Hitchcock's films were extensively storyboarded to the finest detail. I'm satisfied with my life, and what the years have brought me. The film stands as a prime example of the directors penchant for presenting evil lurking in commonplace settings and depicting the extraordinary feelings of ordinary characters. . Hitchcock received his first nomination for Best Director, his first of five such nominations. [167] With his droll delivery, gallows humour and iconic image, the series made Hitchcock a celebrity. [101] To meet distribution purposes in America, the film's runtime was cut and this included removal of one of Hitchcock's favourite scenes: a children's tea party which becomes menacing to the protagonists. [155] Critical response at the time was mixed. They were icy and remote. Laurence Olivier as Crassus, and John Gavin. [185] Time magazine called the film "smoothly troweled and thoroughly entertaining". [178], Vertigo contains a camera technique developed by Irmin Roberts, commonly referred to as a dolly zoom, which has been copied by many filmmakers. Among the best known films in which he appeared were The Rainmaker and Hitchcock's Rear Window. Hedren visits him in Bodega Bay (where The Birds was filmed)[201] carrying a pair of lovebirds as a gift. After two espionage films, the plot marked a return to the murder-thriller genre. ", The man who played and toyed with death in film after film seldom spoke seriously about the subject in interviews. In most cases, it is an ordinary, everyday person who finds themselves in a dangerous situation. Whilst visual storytelling was pertinent during the silent era, even after the arrival of sound, Hitchcock still relied on visuals in cinema; he referred to this emphasis on visual storytelling as "pure cinema". [210], In the film, Marnie Edgar (Hedren) steals $10,000 from her employer and goes on the run. Her daughter, Katie O'Connell-Fiala, confirmed that she died Monday in Thousand Oaks, Calif. She appeared in her father . She explains that she does not want to be touched, but during the "honeymoon", Mark rapes her. Retrieved 21 August 2017. A career in engineering was side-tracked when Mr. Hitchcock enrolled in a fine arts course at London University and later became enamored of the cinema. A hospital spokesman said at the time that Mr. Hitchcock "just didn't feel good," and added that the health problems then were not considered serious. At first, Thornhill believes Kendall is helping him, but then realises that she is an enemy agent; he later learns that she is working undercover for the CIA. Asked by a reporter after the ceremony why it had taken the Queen so long, Hitchcock quipped, "I suppose it was a matter of carelessness." Hitchcock was voted the "Greatest Director of 20th Century" in a poll conducted by Japanese film magazine kinema Junpo. $3.92. [217] Upon release, Torn Curtain was a box office disappointment,[218] and Topaz was disliked by critics and the studio. A publicity still for Alfred Hitchcock's 1963 thriller The Birds, in which flocks of crazed birds attack and kill residents of a coastal California town. more than a little Alfred Hitchcock will appear in every thriller, every urbane mystery and every well-wrought shocker that is made for decades to come.". At the request of his friend, Sidney Bernstein of the British Ministry of Information, Hitchcock returned to London in 1944 to make two short pictures highlighting the efforts of the French Resistance, Bon Voyage and Aventure Malgache.. + $3.65 shipping. [98] The MacGuffin is an item or goal the protagonist is pursuing, one that otherwise has no narrative value; in The 39 Steps, the MacGuffin is a stolen set of design plans. "[105] The film was based on the novel The Wheel Spins (1936) written by Ethel Lina White. But the real miracle of Hitchcocks career was that he was a master entertainer and showman who also managed, through the rigorous tackling of personal, obsessive themes, to create great art which invites, and withstands, almost endless investigation. When Frenzy was shown at the Cannes Film Festival in 1972, however, critics were virtually unanimous in stating that the director was operating at the peak of his powers once again. After the scene was filmed, the publicity department asked Hitchcock to make storyboards to promote the film, and Hitchcock in turn hired an artist to match the scenes in detail. I have a strongly visual mind. . He and his wife Alma kept a low profile, and were not interested in attending parties or being celebrities. When he returned to London in 1971 to shoot Frensy, his first British production In 20 years, a photograph seen worldwide showed a life-sized replica of Hitchcock floating down the Thames River. Ingrid Bergman, whom Hitchcock directed three times (Spellbound, Notorious, and Under Capricorn), is dark blonde. [262] For Hitchcock, the actors were part of the film's setting. [114] In June that year, Life magazine called him the "greatest master of melodrama in screen history". He also enjoyed riding in an elevator, launching into an involved suspense story which would have strangers hanging on his every word, then timing it so that he would exit just before reaching the climax of the tale. Another example Krohn notes is the American remake of The Man Who Knew Too Much, whose shooting schedule commenced without a finished script and moreover went over schedule, something that, as Krohn notes, was not an uncommon occurrence on many of Hitchcock's films, including Strangers on a Train and Topaz. They play a couple whose son is kidnapped to prevent them from interfering with an assassination. "[206] While filming the attack scene in the atticwhich took a week to filmshe was placed in a caged room while two men wearing elbow-length protective gloves threw live birds at her. [97] John Buchan, author of The Thirty-Nine Steps on which the film is loosely based, met with Hitchcock on set and attended the high-profile premire at the New Gallery Cinema in London. )[74] Released in January 1927, The Lodger was a commercial and critical success in the UK. [140] In January that year, Shadow of a Doubt was released, which Hitchcock had fond memories of making. She was 93. "[177], In Vertigo, Stewart plays Scottie, a former police investigator suffering from acrophobia, who becomes obsessed with a woman he has been hired to shadow (Novak). No clouds, no shadows, nothing.'". Lloyd died at home in Los Angeles Tuesday, his son. For instance, he hosted a dinner party where he dyed all the food blue because he claimed there weren't enough blue foods. Although his first American picture, Rebecca, won an Academy Award for best picture and he was nominated personally five times, for Rebecca, Lifeboat, Spellbound, Rear Window and Psycho, It is somewhat ironic that virtually the only honor Hitchcock never received during his career was an Oscar as best director. without the element of surprise the scenes become meaningless. [80] The couple honeymooned in Paris, Lake Como and St. Moritz, before returning to London to live in a leased flat on the top two floors of 153 Cromwell Road, Kensington. And while that certainly crippled him in many ways, it was emphysema that took his life. He was overweight and suffering from back aches. He would also socialise with fellow English filmmakers Ivor Montagu and Adrian Brunel, and Walter C. [26][46] He enjoyed watching films, especially American cinema, and from the age of 16 read the trade papers; he watched Charlie Chaplin, D. W. Griffith and Buster Keaton, and particularly liked Fritz Lang's Der mde Tod (1921). A Hitchcock film is an organism, with the whole implied in every detail and every detail related to the whole. It became The Alfred Hitchcock Hour in 1962, and NBC broadcast the final episode on 10 May 1965. A thrill-seeking American heiress played by Kelly surmises his true identity and tries to seduce him. [197], The film scholar Peter William Evans wrote that The Birds (1963) and Marnie (1964) are regarded as "undisputed masterpieces". The Guardian. Many of Mr. Hitchcock's films dealt with the murky, amoral world of modern espionage -- films such as "Notorious," "North By Northwest," "Saboteur," "The 39 Steps" and the planned film that was to be his 54th production "The Short Night," to be based on the career of British double agent George Blake. "I wouldn't drive a car for 11 years after I came to this country for fear of getting a ticket," he told an American interviewer in 1956. He (directed 17 of the programs himself, and the series provided early opportunities for many writers, actors, and directors, such as Robert Altman and William Friedkin. He also had a horse delivered to the dressing room of his friend, actor Gerald du Maurier. The plights of the leading characters in films like "North by Northwest" and "The Man Who Knew Too Much" have been said to symbolize the pecularily disoriented and imperiled state of 20th century man. "The world has lost a tremendous contribution to the art of film and to millions and millions of people. [282] By 2021, nine of his films had been selected for preservation by the US National Film Registry: Rebecca (1940; inducted 2018), Shadow of a Doubt (1943; inducted 1991), Notorious (1946; inducted 2006), Strangers on a Train (1951; inducted 2021), Rear Window (1954; inducted 1997), Vertigo (1958; inducted 1989), North by Northwest (1959; inducted 1995), Psycho (1960; inducted 1992), and The Birds (1963; inducted 2016). [223], Toward the end of his life, Hitchcock was working on the script for a spy thriller, The Short Night, collaborating with James Costigan, Ernest Lehman and David Freeman. The ultimate romantic thriller, made for Selznick from a Ben Hecht script, the Cary Grant-Ingrid Bergman starrer has often been imitated but never equalled. Mr. Hitchcock had used a wheelchair in recent years and had gone through several days of diagnostic tests at Cedar Sinai Hospital Medical Center early last month. [24], While biographer Gene Adair reports that Hitchcock was "an average, or slightly above-average, pupil",[25] Hitchcock said that he was "usually among the four or five at the top of the class";[26] at the end of his first year, his work in Latin, English, French and religious education was noted. It's melancholy to shoot a picture. [278][279] Hitchcock was ranked at No. His last appearance came on the APIs recent Life Achievement Award tribute to Jimmy Stewart. He said it was his most technically challenging film, using a combination of trained and mechanical birds against a backdrop of wild ones. [244] During the 1950s, the Motion Picture Production Code prohibited direct references to homosexuality but the director was known for his subtle references,[245] and pushing the boundaries of the censors. Library of Congress. For the Snyder interview: Snyder, Tom (1973). I hate pregnant women, because then they have children. Why AI Has Some Viewers Asking Which Film Actors Are Real. Emotion comes later and the control of the voice comes later. While there he made two short propaganda films, Bon Voyage (1944) and Aventure Malgache (1944), for the Ministry of Information. His first sound work, Blackmail, in 1929, was the breakthrough talkie for the British film industry, marking its director as the most promising domestic talent. An anecdote Hitchcock loved to retell and swore was highly formative occured when he was six or seven. With Rope (1948), Hitchcock experimented with marshalling suspense in a confined environment, as he had done earlier with Lifeboat. [47], Donald Spoto wrote that most of the staff were Americans with strict job specifications, but the English workers were encouraged to try their hand at anything, which meant that Hitchcock gained experience as a co-writer, art director and production manager on at least 18 silent films. She was 93. [132], Saboteur (1942) is the first of two films that Hitchcock made for Universal Studios during the decade. [266], This view of Hitchcock as a director who relied more on pre-production than on the actual production itself has been challenged by Bill Krohn, the American correspondent of French film magazine Cahiers du Cinma, in his book Hitchcock at Work. In September 1940 the Hitchcocks bought the 200-acre (0.81km2) Cornwall Ranch near Scotts Valley, California, in the Santa Cruz Mountains. Sex should not be advertised. [170] Hitchcock's television series were very profitable, and his foreign-language versions of books were bringing revenues of up to $100,000 a year (equivalent to $920,000 in 2021). In Vertigo and North by Northwest respectively, Kim Novak and Eva Marie Saint play the blonde heroines. I've always said that Walt Disney has the right idea. [215] Both were spy thrillers with Cold War-related themes. They're always quarreling, and they give themselves a lot of airs. [96] Screenwriter Robert Towne remarked, "It's not much of an exaggeration to say that all contemporary escapist entertainment begins with The 39 Steps". The question: "What do the birds want?" [23] The school register lists his year of birth as 1900 rather than 1899; biographer Donald Spoto says he was deliberately enrolled as a 10-year-old because he was a year behind with his schooling. In The 39 Steps, Madeleine Carroll is put in handcuffs. Patricia Hitchcock O'Connell whose connection to her famous father included writing a book about his wife and collaborator, Alma died on Aug. 9 at her home in Thousand Oaks, Calif. She was. In Writing with Hitchcock (2001), Steven DeRosa noted that Hitchcock supervised them through every draft, asking that they tell the story visually. [153] According to Patrick McGilligan, in or around March 1945, Hitchcock and Hecht consulted Robert Millikan of the California Institute of Technology about the development of a uranium bomb. [228] In 2002, MovieMaker named him the most influential director of all time,[272] and a 2007 The Daily Telegraph critics' poll ranked him Britain's greatest director. Gavin, distrusting, warns Leo to stay away from Nicky. [11] He was nominated five times for an Academy Award for Best Director. [275] In 2002, Hitchcock was ranked 2nd in the critics' top ten poll[276] and 5th in the directors' top ten poll[277] in the list of The Greatest Directors of All Time compiled by the Sight & Sound magazine. BFI entry for Hitchcock's first thriller, The Lodger: A Story of the London Fog (1927)[70], Hitchcock established himself as a name director with his first thriller, The Lodger: A Story of the London Fog (1927). He also worked as an assistant to Cutts on The White Shadow (1924), The Passionate Adventure (1924), The Blackguard (1925), and The Prude's Fall (1925). His third film, and the first he directed in England, began his tradition of suspense thrillers: "The Lodger." [241] Of his fifty-three films, eleven revolved around stories of mistaken identity, where an innocent protagonist is accused of a crime and is pursued by police. They mesmerised the men, who often had physical or psychological handicaps. I feel that the English women, the Swedes, the northern Germans, and Scandinavians are a great deal more exciting than the Latin, the Italian, and the French women. . They used to terrify me to death, with everything, and now I'm getting my own back by terrifying other people. Hitchcock reportedly replied: "Evan, when he sticks it in her, I want that camera right on her face! Hitchcock was also among the wealthiest of directors. "[209] A 1964 New York Times film review called it Hitchcock's "most disappointing film in years", citing Hedren's and Connery's lack of experience, an amateurish script and "glaringly fake cardboard backdrops". [104] Benjamin Crisler of the New York Times wrote in June 1938: "Three unique and valuable institutions the British have that we in America have not: Magna Carta, the Tower Bridge and Alfred Hitchcock, the greatest director of screen melodramas in the world. Present at the time of death, which was attributed to natural causes, were his wife of 54 years (Alma Reville); daughter Patricia (Mrs. Joseph) OConnell and grandchildren, Mrs. Jack Nickel, Mrs. Jerry Stone and Katey OConnell. [102], Hitchcock's next major success was The Lady Vanishes (1938), "one of the greatest train movies from the genre's golden era", according to Philip French, in which Miss Froy (May Whitty), a British spy posing as a governess, disappears on a train journey through the fictional European country of Bandrika. [157][158] Hitchcock filmed Stage Fright (1950) at Elstree Studios in England, where he had worked during his British International Pictures contract many years before. [28] He also had a particular interest in London trams.