Alfred Hitchcock was famous for appearing in his films, though in fact there are 13 (out of 52) in which he doesn't feature. His cameos became so popular that he started making them earlier in the film so as not to distract the audience from the plot.
In the film Rope, there was a problem. The play takes place in a single flat with only a few characters. So, what to do about his famous cameo? Easy. He was pictured in outline on a red neon sign advertising 'Reduco', a fake weight-loss product. He had a similar problem with Lifeboat, but got around it with a photograph of him in a magazine on the floor of the lifeboat.
Daphne du Maurier’s short story The Birds was set in Cornwall but the 1963 film was relocated to Bodega Bay, California.
Hitchcock had read of a real-life incident that took place further down the coast at Capitola, when hundreds of crazed Sooty Shearwaters started vomiting anchovies and attacking homes on 18 August 1961. Thirty years later, another mass bird death - of brown pelicans - occurred in the same area. On this occasion the cause was identified: the pelicans had eaten fish that had eaten plankton containing a neurotoxin called domoic acid. Sea lions on the coast were also spotted having seizures.
Domoic acid’s spread is attributed to human activity; it’s a very strong insecticide - stronger than DDT - and it is speculated that it may also be responsible for some cetacean strandings.
The Hitchcock film North By Northwest is misnamed; no such point of the compass exists.
The length of a film should be directly related to the endurance of the human bladder.
Alfred Hitchcock was a trainspotter.
Alfred Hitchcock used Bosco’s Chocolate Syrup for blood in the shower scene in Psycho (1960). The film was in black and white, so consistency mattered more than colour.
The theatrical blood normally used at the time was called ‘Kensington Gore’, a pun on the name of a pair of London streets either side of the Albert Hall (a gore is a narrow, triangular piece of land, or the triangular printed section of a globe). ‘Kensington Gore’ was made in the 1960s and 1970s by John Tynegate, a retired pharmacist, in the village of Abbotsbury, Dorset. Since his death, it has become generic theatrical slang for any fake blood.
Alfred Hitchcock’s only Oscar acceptance speech was just five words long.
When the script is finished, then we add the dialogue.
Salvador Dali designed the dream sequence in Spellbound.
Hitchcock tried to buy all copies of the book Psycho, so that no one would know how it ended before seeing the film.