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Auiler, Dan.

ISBN 10: 0380977834 / ISBN 13: 9780380977833
Published by SPIKE. NY 1999, 1999
Condition: Fine Hardcover
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UNCORRECTED PROOF. Fine in pictorial printed wrappers, laid-into a proof state dj. Bookseller Inventory # 7979

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Bibliographic Details


Publisher: SPIKE. NY 1999

Publication Date: 1999

Binding: Hardcover

Book Condition:Fine

Dust Jacket Condition: Dust Jacket Included

Edition: First Edition.

About this title


From a couple racing across the top of Mount Rushmore to a woman's final shower at an isolated motel, no other filmmaker has given movie fans more unforgettable images or heart-pounding thrills than Alfred Hitchcock. Now for the first time, you can finally share in the Master of Suspense's inspiration and development -- his entire creative process -- in Hitchcock's Notebooks.

With the complete cooperation of the Hitchcock estate and unprecedented access to the director's notes, files, and archives, Dan Auiler takes you from the very beginnings of story creation to the master's final touches during post-production. Actual production notes from Hitchcock's masterpieces join detailed interviews with key production personnel, including writers, actors and actresses, and his personal assistant of more than thirty years.

Mirroring the director's working methods to give you the actual feel of his process, the book explores the production files of Shadow Of A Doubt, Strangers On A Train, North By Northwest, and others, as well as the legendary lost works: The Mountain Eagle and the unfinished film Kaleidoscope. Highlighted by nearly one hundred photographs and illustrations, chapters focus on finding and constructing the right story (featuring interviews with such renowned screenwriters as Charles Bennett, Samuel Taylor, and Ernest Lehman); envisioning the film (from storyboards to set design); the filming (spotlighting Hitchcock's innovations and trick shots); music; and much more.

No fan or film student should be without this definitive guide to the renowned filmaker's art.


Dan Auiler is undoubtedly the luckiest Alfred Hitchcock devotee alive. With the permission of the director's family, he sifted through the Hitchcock archives at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences to create a multifaceted portrait of the artist at work. If this book has a fault, it's that the sheer mass of information makes it a little hard to digest; but taken in small doses, its richness becomes a virtue, offering unique insights into the complicated processes that led to some of the greatest movies ever made.

Auiler divides the creative act into three parts: "Building the Screenplay," "Preparing the Visual," and "Putting It All Together." In each section he provides documents, including memos, script excerpts, sketches, and storyboards from a selection of films. Most interesting are those relating to Kaleidoscope a project from the late '60s that, Auiler contends, would have been a groundbreaking film had the studio not forced Hitchcock to abandon it. This collection also gives full credit to Alma Reville, the director's wife and lifelong collaborator, and her influence on the development of Hitchcock's style is evident throughout. Other gems include a transcript of discussions between Hitchcock and Tippi Hedren about her character in The Birds and a set of production stills from an early, lost movie, The Mountain Eagle.

There's an enormous amount to take in, but what quickly emerges is a sense of Hitchcock's meticulous approach to crafting a film. He frequently sent script treatments to other writers and filmmakers, asking for their critical comments, and Auiler reproduces several of these correspondences, including François Truffaut's detailed analysis of Kaleidoscope. At the other end of the creative journey the book closes with the script for an unproduced Spellbound trailer in which Hitchcock playfully evokes the magic of movies: "That screen up there is like a mind ... we here in Hollywood can make anything happen there." Hitchcock's Notebooks is a testament to the powerful vision and sheer hard work that lay behind that magic. --Simon Leake

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