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Sir Alfred Joseph Hitchcock

Also Known As: "Hitch", "The Master of Suspense"
Birthplace: London, Greater London, England, United Kingdom
Death: April 29, 1980 (80)
Bel Air, Los Angeles County, California, United States
Immediate Family:

Son of William J. Hitchcock, Sr. and Emma Hitchcock
Husband of Alma Lucy Hitchcock
Father of Private; Private and Private
Brother of William John Hitchcock, Jr. and Ellen "Nellie" Lee-Ingram (Hitchcock)

Occupation: Filmmaker and producer, Film Producer
Managed by: Erin Ishimoticha
Last Updated:
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Immediate Family

About Alfred Hitchcock

Nicknamed "Master of Suspense," Alfred Hitchcock was one of the best known directors never to have received an Oscar for directing. Suspicion (1941), Rear Window (1954), North By Northwest (1959), Psycho (1960), and The Birds (1963), are just a few of his films that have chilled fans over the decades. In 1980, Queen Elizabeth II knighted the London native. He died later that year. For his contributions to the motion picture and television industries, Hitchcock received two stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 6506 Hollywood Blvd. and 7013 Hollywood Blvd.

Alfred Joseph Hitchcock was born on 13 August 1899 in Leytonstone, London, the second son and youngest of three children of William Hitchcock, a greengrocer and poulterer, and Emma Jane Hitchcock (née Whelan). He was named after his father's brother, Alfred. His family was mostly Roman Catholic, with his mother and paternal grandmother being of Irish extraction.

To prepare for the ministry, Hitchcock was sent to the Jesuit Classic school St Ignatius' College in Stamford Hill, London. However, rebelling against his Catholic upbringing, he fled to the Bohemian seacoast in 1921. He soon involved himself in motion picture production, receiving valuable training with the British division of Famous Players Lasky. In 1923 he began writing scenarios for the Gainsborough Film Studios.

Hitchcock's first film, The Lodger (1925), an exciting treatment of the Jack the Ripper story, was followed by Blackmail (1930), the first British talking picture. Some think that Hitchcock's next films, The Man Who Knew Too Much (1934), and The Thirty-Nine Steps (1935), were responsible for the renaissance in British movie making during the early 1930s.

In 1939 Hitchcock left England with his wife and daughter to settle in Hollywood. For the most part, his American films of the 1940s were expensively produced and stylishly entertaining. These included Rebecca (1940), based on a best-selling suspense novel; Suspicion (1941), about a woman who believes her husband is a murderer; Shadow of a Doubt (1943), the tale of a small-town psychopath diabolically masquerading as a Good Samaritan; Lifeboat (1944), a heavy-handed study of survival on the open seas; and Spellbound (1945), a murder mystery about psychoanalysts. Less ambitious but more accomplished was Notorious (1946), praised for its rendering of place and atmosphere. Hitchcock's first decade in Hollywood ended with two interesting failures: The Paradine Case (1947) and Rope (1948).

Beginning with the bizarre Strangers on a Train (1951), Hitchcock directed a series of films that placed him among the great artists of modern cinema. His productions of the 1950s were stylistically freer than his earlier films and thematically more complex. His most significant films during that time were I Confess (1953), Rear Window (1954), To Catch a Thief (1955), The Trouble with Harry (1956), The Man Who Knew Too Much (1956), Vertigo (1958), and North by Northwest (1959).

Psycho (1960) was Hitchcock's most terrifying and controversial film, and made an entire generation of moviegoers nervous about taking a shower. The Birds (1963), Marnie (1964), and Family Plot (1976) were Hitchcock's final and less brilliant films. Hitchcock also expanded his directing career into American television, with a series that featured mini-thrillers (1955-1965). Because of failing health, he retired from directing after Family Plot. He was knighted in 1979 and died soon afterward in Los Angeles on April 29, 1980.

Hitchcock's films enjoyed newfound popularity in the 1990s. After a restored print of Vertigo was released in 1996 and became surprisingly successful, plans were made to re-release other films, such as Strangers on a Train. According to Entertainment Weekly, as of 1997 plans were underway to remake as many as half a dozen Hitchcock films with new casts, an idea that met with mixed responses from Hitchcock fans.

Legendary British Motion Picture Director. Called the "Master of Suspense" he is best remembered for his numerous suspense films, including "Dial M for Murder" (1954), North by Northwest" (1959), "Psycho" (1960), and "The Birds" (1963). He is considered one of the greatest British filmmakers of all times. He was noted for his cameo appearances in his own films. Born in Leytonstone, London, England, he was the second son and youngest of three children to a Roman Catholic Irishman, William J. Hitchcock, a fresh fruits and vegetables grocer, and Emma Jane Wheland. He was named after his father's brother, Alfred. When Hitchcock's father died in 1914, Alfred left St. Ignatius School to study at the London County Council School of Engineering. Upon his graduation, he became a draftsman for a cable company in London. During this period, he became intrigued with photography and film making, initially working as a title card designer for what would become Paramount Studios. In 1920, he obtained a position at Islington Studios, designing title cards for silent movies. For a short period in the early 1920s, Hitchcock would work as a set designer in the German film industry, and in 1922, he got his first opportunity to direct a movie, "Number 13" (1922), which was cancelled due to financial problems. In 1925, he got a second opportunity to direct, with "The Pleasure Garden" (1925), made at the UFA Studios in Germany, which flopped with audiences. Hitchcock's luck finally changed with a drama thriller called "The Lodger: A Story of the London Fog" (1927), which became a commercial success in both the UK and the United States. In 1926, he married his assistant director, Alma Reville; she would become his closest collaborator, helping him write several screenplays and worked with him on every one of his films. Hitchcock would go on to create a number of pioneering cinematic techniques, including using "the wrong man" theme (in which a leading man is mistaken for someone else), using famous landmarks as a backdrop for suspense sequences, experimenting in using sound repetition of certain words to stress the impression on the audience, and using incidents from his childhood years to highlight drama (such as when he was required to stand at attention in front of his mother's bed for hours, after he had been bad). In his film, "The 39 Steps" (1935), Hitchcock introduces the MacGuffin, a plot device around which the story seems to evolve, but at the end is revealed to have no meaning to the story. By the end of the 1930s, Hitchcock was so well known in Britain, that David O. Selznick signed him to a seven year contract, and Hitchcock moved to Hollywood. During his period in Hollywood, Hitchcock would continue his suspense films, beginning with "Rebecca" (1940), which won the Oscar for Best Picture (1940). The Oscar was given to Selznick, as the film's producer, rather than to Hitchcock as its director. During World War II, Hitchcock would produce a number of patriotic themed suspense movies, including making two movies for the Free French Government in Britain in 1943-44; his only films in the French language. In 1945, he served as film editor for a Holocaust documentary for the British Army, which showed the liberation of Nazi Concentration Camps; this film was not released until 1985. In 1945, Hitchcock began filming what is considered one of his best films, "Notorious" (1946), which starred Ingrid Bergman and Cary Grant, and cited a Nazi plot about using uranium to create an atomic bomb; when the FBI heard about the plot, they put Hitchcock under surveillance. Hitchcock thought his story line was science fiction until the US bombed Hiroshima, Japan. In the post war years, Hitchcock would work with many stars, including James Stewart, Janet Leigh, Grace Kelly, Cary Grant and Doris Day. His list of hit films would be significant, numbering dozens of films. Hitchcock was one of the early film producers who realized the importance of television. From 1955 to 1965, he was host and producer of a television series, "Alfred Hitchcock Presents," which he would introduce the show and give it an epilogue. The television series would make him a celebrity himself, and his mannerisms would become very familiar with American audiences, and often the subject of parody. Hitchcock died of renal failure in his Bel Air, California home at the age of 80. His body was cremated, and the ashes scattered over the Pacific Ocean; his wife, Alma, would die just two years later, on July 6, 1982. Over his life, Hitchcock was nominated for five Oscars as Best Director, and one Oscar as Producer of Best Picture. Sixteen Hitchcock-directed films were nominated for Oscars, and a total of fifty films were nominated for Oscars that Hitchcock had worked on, making him one of the most Oscar nominated motion picture personalities in history. Oddly enough, he never won an Oscar. Queen Elizabeth II made Hitchcock a Knight Commander of the Order of the British Empire in 1980. He held joint American and British citizenship. (bio by: [fg.cgi?page=mr&MRid=46483611" target="_blank Kit and Morgan Benson)] Maintained by: Find A Grave Record added: Jan 01, 2001

Find A Grave Memorial# 486

Cremated Ashes scattered at sea

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Alfred Hitchcock's Timeline

August 13, 1899
London, Greater London, England, United Kingdom
April 29, 1980
Age 80
Bel Air, Los Angeles County, California, United States
Age 80