Alfred Hitchcock

Introduction

In the present essay, our ambition is to give as comprehensive a list of Alfred Hitchcock’s movie trailers as possible. We have been collecting video versions of Hitchcock’s trailers for several years and finally we reached the point that at least one trailer for every Hitchcock film starting from The Man Who Knew Too Much (1934) can be found in our collection.

We do not claim that we have found all existing trailers; in fact, there are hints of some (including one for Vertigo [1958]) that we could not locate. Readers who can make our list more complete are therefore welcome to get in touch with us by mail or email.

In any case, comprehensiveness was only intended for theatrical trailers. An entire (probably not a bit less fascinating) project would be to collect other promotional materials used to advertise Hitchcock’s films: radio spots, television spots, recordings for theatre lobbies, etc. At the end of our article (under the title of “Curiosities”), we do list several of these promotional materials, too – some of them were taken from other written sources, some directly from our video collection – just to give the reader a flavour of what delights must still be waiting to be discovered.

For each theatrical trailer (i.e., the English-language ones), we tried to give as precise a transcript as we could. 100 percent precision is an impossible task, since music, narrations, flashing images from scenes, and written cards frequently overlap each other, and can hardly be reproduced in a written essay. All the narrations and dialogue scenes were transcribed, and instead of just typing the words of written cards, we also tried to reproduce, at least partly, their visual character (small or capital letters, italics, etc.) as they appear on the screen. To give a still better feeling of how each trailer looks, we also included in the article a single frame from each of them. These frames were not chosen arbitrarily, but always on the basis of some peculiarity.

After several transcripts our own remarks, or those by previous authors, were added. These remarks often give an explanation of why a particular frame was chosen.

* * *

Transcripts of the trailers

I. British Era (1934–1939)

1. The Man Who Knew Too Much (2’42”)

<cards>
FROM SWITZERLAND
TO LONDON
Through all the Capitals of Europe
This arch criminal of all crime
This ruthless fiend
with exquisite manners
Blazed a trail of INTRIGUE
and TERROR!
<clip>
“Mr Lawrence, Ropa’s in London, and an attempt may be made on his life. My department must protect him. Now will you tell me what was on that piece of paper?”
“I’m sorry, I’m afraid I can’t. But I can tell you what’s written on another piece of paper. That our child had been kidnapped. And if we spoke we’d never see her again.”
“You know, to a man with a heart as soft as mine there’s nothing sweeter that a touching scene.”
“Such as?”
“Such as a father saying goodbye to his child. Yeah, a good cry for the last time. What could be more touching than that?”
“Daddy, Daddy! Let me go! Daddy!”
<clips: cantata, gun and scream>
<cards>

PETER LORRE as
THE LORD HIGH MINISTER
of EVERYTHING SINISTER
in “THE MAN WHO KNEW TOO MUCH”
with NOVA PILBEAM
LESLIE BANKS
EDNA BEST
<clip: Betty on the roof>
“It’s Betty!”
<cards>
He defied the ARMED POLICE
of a CONTINENT
In the most sinister MURDER PLOT
SINCE THE ASSASSINATION
THAT STARTED THE WORLD WAR!
“THE Man WHO KNEW TOO MUCH” A GB Production

Remarks:

• the bombastic exaggerations that characterize the Hollywood trailers of the 1940s are already present in this British one too (“through all the Capitals of Europe”, etc.)

• we hear the loud scream just as Peter Lorre’s name appears on the screen (indicating that his name was already connected to famous villains – at least one: the child murderer in M (Fritz Lang, 1931) – in the audience’s mind)

• Bob Lawrence (Leslie Banks) is shown to be shot by the killer, the purpose being to cause apprehension in the audience (it only turns out while watching the whole film that

• Abbott (Peter Lorre) is also shown to be shot (and killed) by the police, in order to reassure the viewers that justice will finally be served in the film

• the final titles are superimposed on a painting of spying eyes, very much in the mood of the Dali paintings for Spellbound (1945)

• images from the most outstanding scene of the film (excerpts from the cantata, the gun, the scream) are already referred to in this trailer, as well as in the trailer of the remake (see below)

The Man Who Knew Too Much The Man Who Knew Too Much

2. The 39 Steps (1’06”)

<clip>
“Darling, fancy seeing you!”
<clip>
“Ma’am, have you seen a man passing in the last few minutes?” “This is the man you want I think.”
<clip>
“There, miss, now you’re a special constable.” “What’s the idea? What are you doing this for?” “As long as you stay, he stays.”
<cards>
MURDER!
MYSTERY!! <written slanted upwards>
TREACHERY!!!
ROMANCE!!!! <written slanted downwards>
Hounded by spies… Hunted by police…
Double crossed by the woman he loves… in
THE 39 STEPS
<clip>
“I demand that you allow me to telephone to the High Commissioner for Canada in London.” “You’d better do that from London, you’ll be there soon enough. Stop him!”
<clip>
“I’ve the honour in presenting to you one of the most remarkable men in the world, Mr Memory.” “What are the Thirty-nine Steps?” <shot>
<cards>
It STARTS with a MURDER …
And ENDS in a THRILL
“THE 39 STEPS” Re-released by ELLIS FILMS, INC.

Remarks:

• instead of “Darling, fancy seeing you!”, the line Richard Hannay (Robert Donat) says in the film is “Darling, how lovely to see you”, indicating that the makers of the trailer used outtakes

• similarly, instead of “I’ve the honour in presenting to you …”, in the film the announcer first says, “I’ve the honour of presenting to you …”, and later (in the scene that is actually referred to in the trailer) he says, “I’ve the honour to present to you …”

• the trailer reveals the fact that Mr Memory (Wylie Watson) will be shot (although the viewers can not be sure; we only see him looking startled after we hear the shot)

The 39 Steps The 39 Steps

3. Secret Agent ( 4’57”)

<cards (scrolling)>
Again! …
The master of mystery melodrama … Alfred Hitchcock … the man who directed “THE 39 STEPS” … weaves his magic story-telling art into the very tops in fast-moving, smartly-written, intriguing entertainment … to give you
“SECRET AGENT” from the brilliant pen of W. SOMERSET MAUGHAM!
Here are a few scenes showing gorgeous
MADELEINE CARROLL (… Miss “39 Steps” herself )
Was she a woman to love ? …
… or a SPY to fear!
PETER LORRE (… a most courteous cutthroat)
JOHN GIELGUD … London’s outstanding stage star!
ROBERT YOUNG (… Imagine Robert Young as a villain!)
<clip>
“I’d better keep this handy. You see, I don’t trust you. Now what are you doing on this train?” “I’ve told you.” “You’re here on business. Old man R’s business. You’re in the spy racket too, aren’t you?”
<clip>
“How does Mrs. Ashenden look now? This has all been done for your special benefit.” “Very kind of you, I’m sure. You’re fond of yourself, aren’t you?”
<clip>
“Listen, we’re not going through with this, do you hear?” “So we are not? You forget instructions of Mr R. You prepared, me finish. Besides, what about my money for this job?”
<clip>
“Look out, Caypor, for God’s sake!”
“But the button …”
“The wrong man!”
<cards>
Sealed orders in London!
Romance in Geneva!
Murder in the Alps!
… and Betrayal in the Balkans !
<clip>
“You’re either the biggest double-crossing liar I’ve ever met, or …”
“You go with Madame. Our conference will be very short. I’ll call you back soon.”
“Wait a minute!” “What are you doing?” “You heard what I said just now. I meant it. I’d sooner see you dead than let you do this.”
<cards>
A mystery melodrama that surpasses even “The 39 Steps”
“SECRET AGENT” A GB PRODUCTION

Remarks:

• the first known example where Hitchcock’s name (this time as “the master of mystery melodrama”) and one of his earlier films are referred to in a trailer

• the first time that the literary source of a Hitchcock film is mentioned in a trailer

Secret Agent

4. The Lady Vanishes (1’40”)

<cards>
Roaring out of the Darkness …
comes the screen’s Greatest Thriller!

<clip>
“Do you hear? Why don’t you do something before it’s too late?” “Please, please.” “I know you think I’m crazy, but I’m not, I’m not! For heaven’s sake, stop this train!” “Now, come …” “Leave me alone, leave me alone!”
<cards>
“THE LADY VANISHES”
GREATEST of
HITCHCOCK’S THRILLERS!
<voice>
“See The Lady Vanishes. Sit in breathless anticipation, gripped by its overwhelming excitement. And you’ll know why it is hailed by critics as the unmatched classic of breathtaking suspense, and why Hitchcock stands unrivalled as the incomparable master of thrills.”
<clip>
“La signora inglese. The English lady. Where is she?” “There has been no English lady here.” “What?” “There has been no English lady here.”
<cards>
Starring MICHAEL REDGRAVE
Margaret LOCKWOOD
PAUL LUKAS

<clip>
“Come any nearer and I’ll fire. I warned you.”
<cards>
“A Brilliant Melodrama.” N.Y.Times
“Piles one thrilling sequence on another.” … Newsweek Magazine
“**** Will Give You The Feeling That You Are Riding On The
Swiftest, Highest, Longest Roller Coaster in the World!” … N.Y. Daily News
<clip>
“You saw it, you must have seen it, she’s on the train!” “Now steady, steady.”
<cards>
THRILL to never-before-felt Excitement!
“THE LADY VANISHES”
Re-Released thru UNITED ARTISTS

Remarks:

• Hitchcock is mentioned twice, associated with the words “thrill” and “thriller”

• this trailer was probably shown in the USA, and is probably slightly different from the British version

The Lady Vanishes

5. Jamaica Inn (1’44”)

<cards>
AN UNIQUE COMBINATION
The Star – CHARLES LAUGHTON
The Director – ALFRED HITCHCOCK
The Producer – ERICH POMMER
The Result – “JAMAICA INN”
<clip>
“What is all this business of yours, uh, smuggling?” “No sir. It’s much worse than that: wrecking, deliberate organized wrecking.”
<cards>
THE GANG
And THEIR LEADER
<clip>
“… you, uh, said he was the ring leader.” “At Jamaica Inn, yes, but he gets his orders from outside, his information comes from outside, his thinking’s done for him outside.” “By whom?”
<clip>
“My name is Sir Humphrey Pengallan. I’m squire Pengallan and justice of the peace.” “I’m Mary Yellen from Ireland.” “And you’re going where?” “To Jamaica Inn.”
<clip>
“It’s a horrible place. I think it’s nothing better than a den of smugglers.”
<clip>
“But I’ve always known Joss wasn’t his own master. There’s someone else, Mary. Tonight I found out who, Mary it’s …”
<cards>
But – WHOSE WAS THE BRAIN BEHIND IT?
CHARLES Laughton
LESLIE Banks
EMLYN Williams
ROBERT Newton
MAUREEN O’Hara
“JAMAICA INN”
A POMMER-LAUGHTON PRODUCTION A MAYFLOWER PICTURE
DISTRIBUTED BY
RENOWN PICTURE CORPORATION LTD.

Remark:

• the first trailer in which Hitchcock actually appears (in a photograph)

Jamaica Inn

II. American Era Part 1 (1940–1957)

1. Rebecca (2’20”)

<card>
The Selznick Studio
<voice>
“Announcing the return of the most glamorous motion picture ever made. David O. Selznick and Alfred Hitchcock bring you the grand slam prize winner that made motion picture history. Winner of the Academy Award, voted by America’s critics as the best picture of the year, and now, as a result of a national poll, winning new honors, as audiences throughout the country vote to see it again. The Selznick Studio’s successor to Gone With The Wind, Rebecca! Brought to the screen with all the warmth and emotion that made millions of readers acclaim Daphne du Maurier’s best-seller as the most exciting love story of our time. The fascinating Max de Winter lives on the screen in the person of Laurence Olivier.”
<clip>
“Why, it’s Max de Winter!” “How do you do?”
<voice>
“The shy unsophisticated young girl who dared to follow in the footsteps of the beautiful Rebecca is portrayed by lovely Joan Fontaine.”
<clip>
“How could I ask you to love me when I knew you loved Rebecca still? Whenever you touched me, I knew you were comparing me with Rebecca.”
<voice>
“What is the mystery of Rebecca? What dread secret is hidden within the silent walls of Manderley?”
<clip>
“Not only in this room, it’s in all the rooms in the house. You can almost hear it now. Do you think the dead come back and watch the living?”
<clip>
“Tell me, is Mrs. Van Hopper a friend of yours or just a relation?” “No, she’s my employer. I’m what is known as a paid companion.” “I didn’t know companionship could be bought.”
<voice>
“There is mystery, love and laughter in Rebecca, the motion picture still unsurpassed for suspenseful romance.”
<cards>
“REBECCA”
BASED ON DAPHNE DU MAURIER’S Celebrated NOVEL
Starring LAURENCE OLIVIER and JOAN FONTAINE
GEORGE SANDERS
JUDITH ANDERSON
Produced by David O. Selznick Directed by Alfred Hitchcock
“REBECCA” The Most Glamorous Motion Picture Ever Made.

Remarks:

• the first time the book on which a Hitchcock’s film has been based is shown in the trailer

• the first Hitchcock trailer to use a narrator

• Hitchcock’s name is mentioned twice, Selznick’s four times

• the Academy Award is already mentioned, suggesting that this is a re-release trailer

Rebecca

2. Foreign Correspondent (2’20”)

<cards>
EXTRA!
Amsterdam: CAMERA RECORDS ASSASSINATION OF INTERNATIONAL POLITICAL LEADER!
<voice of Joel McCrea>
“Hello ladies and gentlemen, this is Johnny Jones, the Globe‘s syndicate speaking to you from Amsterdam, Holland, where I’ve been an eyewitness to the assassination of the Dutch cabinet minister, Van Meer, the key figure of European politics. An hour ago I arrived from London by plane to meet Van Meer. As I waited for him on the steps to the Peace Palace, he alighted from his car and made his way toward me. Halfway, he was stopped by a news photographer who asked for a picture. Van Meer consented and was shot dead by a revolver held close to the photographer’s camera. Bystanders rushed to Van Meer’s aid and I pursued the assassin through the crowd, only to lose him in traffic.”
<clip>
“Follow that car! Quick! Say you better get out of here, this might be dangerous” “Don’t be silly. Drive on!” “What’s the trouble? Who’s been shot?” “Van Meer. Assassinated.” “Dead ?” “Looks like it.”
<cards>
THE THRILL SPECTACLE OF THE YEAR
“FOREIGN CORRESPONDENT”
by ALFRED HITCHCOCK who directed “REBECCA”
<clip>
“I can’t see!” “Here, here. There you are, me boy. Oh!”
<clip>
“I’m afraid you’ll have to keep the girl there much longer than we planned.” “But that’s absolutely impossible!” “I think you better keep the girl off for the rest of the night.” “Well, I can’t very well explain, but I simply couldn’t pull a thing like that!”
<clip>
“If you know how much I loved you, you’d faint. There. Now what did I tell you?”
<voice>
“Joel McCray, Laraine Day, Herbert Marshall, George Sanders, Albert Basserman, Robert Benchley”
<cards>
THE MOST THRILLING SCENE EVER FILMED!
JOEL McCREA LARAINE DAY HERBERT MARSHALL GEORGE SANDERS ALBERT BASSERMAN ROBERT BENCHLEY and a supporting cast of thousands
Walter Wanger PRESENTS Alfred Hitchcock’s spectacular production “FOREIGN CORRESPONDENT” RELEASED THRU UNITED ARTISTS

Remarks:

• the first Hitchcock trailer in which a principal actor speaks lines that were specifically recorded for the trailer

• the introductory titles match the “newspaper-reporter” theme of the film nicely, even giving the audience the impression that they are watching a newsreel, instead of a trailer

• a card says “by Alfred Hitchcock”, instead of “directed by Alfred Hitchcock” (an earlier manifestation of the auteur theory?)

• unlike the trailer for 1940’s Rebecca (which exploited the literary value and popularity of the book), this trailer explicitly publicizes the cinematic value of a certain scene (the plane crash)

Foreign Correspondent

3. Mr. & Mrs. Smith (0’43”)

<cards>
DID YOU HEAR? <in bubble>
THEY’RE NOT MARRIED! <in bubble>
WHAT A SITUATION! <in bubble>
THOUGHT I’D DIE LAUGHING! <in bubble>
LOOK WHO’S CAUSING THE PANIC!
Carole Lombard Robert Montgomery
<voice>
“You’ll see Carole Lombard and Robert Montgomery together for the first time. You’ll see one of the funniest comedy situations that ever hit the screen. You’ll see what happens when Mr. and Mrs. Smith discover that they were never legally married.”
<cards>
YOU’LL LAUGH ‘TILL IT HURTS!
Carole LOMBARD Robert MONTGOMERY Gene RAYMOND
“Mr. and Mrs. Smith” an RKO Radio Picture

Remarks:

• this trailer consists only of still photos, which is very unusual; cf.

Federico Fellini’s revolutionary trailer for La Dolce Vita [1960], which used still photographs cut to an insistent conga drumbeat

– Kenneth Turan

• the beginning is reminiscent of comics from magazines (with dialogue written in bubbles)

• this is a very short trailer, suggesting that there might have been another, longer one

• Hitchcock is not mentioned

Mr. & Mrs. Smith

4. Suspicion (1’35”)

<cards>
STARRING Cary Grant
AND Joan Fontaine
<clip of Joan Fontaine>
“There was something strange about Johnny Aysgarth. I knew it long before I married him. Nothing you could put your finger on, and yet you were always conscious of it. Conscious of something vague, restless, frightening. There was our first meeting on a hilltop.”
<clip>
“Now what did you think I would do, kill you? Nothing less than murder can justify such a violent self-defence.”
<Joan Fontaine>
“It’s so easy to think I knew Johnny loved me as desperately as I loved him, and yet I remember that even his reassurances seemed almost sinister.”
<clip>
“I want nothing but to spend the rest of my life with you. And if you were to die first, I …” “What if I were to die first?”
<Joan Fontaine>
“From that moment on my life was filled with fear. Not of Johnny – I loved him too much to really be afraid – but the fear of not knowing, the agony of waiting, the wondering how it would happen, the waking in the middle of the night shaking with terror and finding myself praying that whatever it was it would be done quickly and with mercy. These are the facts, the evidence before the crime. I wanted you to know, in case I met a violent end.”
<cards>
Cary Grant IN HIS MOST STRIKING DRAMATIC TRIUMPH
Joan Fontaine
WITH SIR CEDRIC HARDWICKE NIGEL BRUCE DAME MAY WHITTY ISABEL JEANS HEATHER ANGEL
in SUSPICION AN RKO RADIO Re-release

Remarks:

the Suspicion trailer is not average. For one thing, notes James Pollak, who wrote and directed it for RKO, it was the first time a star did a special narration for a trailer. ‘Hitchcock wasn’t involved at all,’ Pollak goes on. ‘He looked at it when it was finished, and that was it.’

– Michael Goodwin

• it is as if Joan Fontaine were talking to the audience in the middle of the film: she already knows the first half of the story, but doesn’t know how it will end

Suspicion Suspicion

5. Saboteur

#1 (2’30”)

<cards>
THE SCREEN’S Master OF THE UNEXPECTED …
Director ALFRED HITCHCOCK
Creator of “REBECCA” “FOREIGN CORRESPONDENT” “SUSPICION”
… BRINGS YOU A SIGNIFICANT STORY Of Today …
“SABOTEUR”
STARRING Priscilla LANE AND Robert CUMMINGS
<clip of Robert Cummings>
“I’m Barry Kane, American. Right now I’m a fugitive. A couple of days ago, I was an aircraft worker. Then something happened. Something that could only happen in times like these. My best friend died in that fire. The authorities questioned everybody. I told them what I knew. I even offered to help, but it was no good. They wouldn’t believe me.”
<clip>
“There were two detectives here a moment ago; they wanted to arrest you. They said that you killed him.” “That I killed …”
<Robert Cummings>
“You don’t know what it is to be hunted like an animal, to dread every door you open. To fear everybody, even the one girl you could love.”
<clip>
“Even if a man committed murder to defend himself, maybe I wouldn’t tell the police, but there’s only one reason why a man commits sabotage, that’s worse than murder.”
<Robert Cummings>
“We fled through 3,000 miles of terror from Los Angeles to New York. Step by step the whole vast pattern of sabotage became clear to us; we had to find those saboteurs. Saboteurs who lived in the desert like rats and spied out the land. Influential saboteurs so crazy for power they were willing to stab this country in the back. Well, we found them and we almost wished we hadn’t.”
<clip>
“Barry, before they get to us, go up and stop the music and tell them, tell them all.” “Honey, this is the Sutton mansion. I’m just a guy from Glendale, California, wanted by the police. They’ll grab me as soon as I open my mouth.” “What are you gonna do? We can’t just stand here.”
<cards>
YOU’D LIKE TO SAY … IT CAN’T HAPPEN HERE …
… BUT EVERY JOLTING SCENE is True!
Priscilla LANE AND Robert CUMMINGS
WITH NORMAN LLOYD OTTO KRUGER ALAN BAXTER ALMA KRUGER DOROTHY PETERSON CLEM BEVANS IN
“SABOTEUR” PRESENTED BY FRANK LLOYD PRODUCTIONS, INC.
ASSOCIATE PRODUCER JACK H. SKIRBALL A UNIVERSAL PICTURE

Remarks:

• it refers to several earlier Hitchcock films

• Hitchcock is already “the star above the title” (the trailer starts with his name)

• similar to Suspicion, the protagonist looks straight in the camera and tells us the predicament he finds himself in

#2 (1’52”)

<cards>
THE SCREEN’S Master OF THE UNEXPECTED …
Director ALFRED HITCHCOCK
… BRINGS YOU A SIGNIFICANT STORY Of Today …
“SABOTEUR”
STARRING Priscilla LANE AND Robert CUMMINGS
<clip of Robert Cummings>
“I’m Barry Kane, American. Right now I’m a fugitive. A couple of days ago, I was an aircraft worker. Then something happened. My best friend died in that fire. The authorities questioned everybody. I told them what I knew.”
<clip>
“There were two detectives here a moment ago; they wanted to arrest you. They said that you killed him.”
<Robert Cummings>
“You don’t know what it is to be hunted like an animal, to dread every door you open. To fear everybody, even the one girl you could love.”
<clip>
“Even if a man committed murder to defend himself, maybe I wouldn’t tell the police, but there’s only one reason why a man commits sabotage, that’s worse than murder.”
<Robert Cummings>
“We fled through 3,000 miles of terror from Los Angeles to New York. Step by step the whole vast pattern of sabotage became clear to us; we had to find those saboteurs. Well, we found them and we almost wished we hadn’t.”
<clip>
“… before they get to us, go up and stop the music and tell them, tell them all.” “Honey, this is the Sutton mansion. I’m just a guy from Glendale, California, wanted by the police. They’ll grab me as soon as I open my mouth.” “What are you gonna do? We can’t just stand here.”
<cards>
YOU’D LIKE TO SAY … IT CAN’T HAPPEN HERE …
… BUT EVERY JOLTING SCENE is True!
Priscilla LANE AND Robert CUMMINGS
WITH NORMAN LLOYD OTTO KRUGER ALAN BAXTER ALMA KRUGER DOROTHY PETERSON CLEM BEVANS IN
“SABOTEUR” PRESENTED BY FRANK LLOYD PRODUCTIONS, INC. ASSOCIATE PRODUCER JACK H. SKIRBALL A UNIVERSAL PICTURE

Remark:

• shortened version of the previous trailer (it may be significant that the lines “Saboteurs who lived in the desert like rats and spied out the land. Influential saboteurs so crazy for power, they were willing to stab this country in the back” and “I even offered to help but it was no good. They wouldn’t believe me” were omitted here)

Saboteur Saboteur

6. Shadow of a Doubt (1’20”)

<cards>
SO GREAT THE WORLD CAN NEVER FORGET IT …
SO THRILLING IT HAD TO BE BROUGHT BACK
TERESA WRIGHT
JOSEPH COTTEN
IN A MASTERPIECE OF MYSTERY AND SUSPENSE
ALFRED HITCHCOCK’S “SHADOW OF A DOUBT”
<clip>
“Do you know the world is a foul sty? Do you know if you ripped the fronts off houses you’d find swine?”
<clip>
“I don’t want you to touch my mother. So go away, I’m warning you, go away or I’ll kill you myself.”
<clip>
“Your hands. Let me go, Uncle Charlie. Let me go.”
<cards>
TERROR WARNING HER TO KILL … OR BE KILLED
TERESA WRIGHT JOSEPH COTTEN WITH MACDONALD CAREY PATRICIA COLLINGE HENRY TRAVERS WALLACE FORD HUME CRONYN
“SHADOW OF A DOUBT” Produced by JACK SKIRBALL Re-released by REALART PICTURES, INC.

Remark:

• the first time a film is called “Alfred Hitchcock’s …” in a trailer

Shadow of a Doubt

7. Lifeboat (2’00”)

<voice>
“Swirls of excitement, second after second! Lifeboat. Directed with daring boldness by Alfred Hitchcock from John Steinbeck’s dramatic realistic story, exactly as nine million readers thrilled to it in Collier’s. Lifeboat stars Tallulah Bankhead, with William Bendix, Walter Slezak, Mary Anderson, John Hodiak, Henry Hull – the entire cast superb. This picture dares to strip life of all its chaffs, that shows human beings at their best and at their worst. Here is the joyous ecstasy of youth finding love and the smouldering rage of a love burned out.”
<clip>
<Hitchcock’s cameo> “Ah, there is a piece in here about some people who were adrift on a lifeboat for eighty days. Say, maybe we can beat that record. We might even get in the newsreels.”
<clip>
“Where did you get the handcuff, Mrs Porter?” “It worked miracles for me. It took me from the South Side to the North Side. It was my passport from the dockyards to the girl coast. It got me everything I wanted. Up to now.”
<cards>
HOTLY IMPASSIONED AND COLDLY STARK Drama …
OF THE BRAVERY … COWARDICE … EMOTIONS OF Desperate Men …
AND Women WHO PUT LOVE BEFORE LIFE ITSELF …
ONCE AGAIN … ALFRED HITCHCOCK MASTER OF SUSPENSEFUL DRAMA
Thrills YOU WITH SUPERB, EXCITING SCREEN ENTERTAINMENT
TALLULAH BANKHEAD WILLIAM BENDIX MARY ANDERSON WALTER SLEZAK JOHN HODIAK HENRY HULL IN
ALFRED HITCHCOCK’S PRODUCTION OF “LIFEBOAT” BY JOHN STEINBECK PRODUCED BY KENNETH MACGOWAN 20TH CENTURY FOX DIRECTED BY ALFRED HITCHCOCK

Remarks:

• Hume Cronyn is conspicuously absent from the cast listing; the reasons for this are unclear

• it is the first time a Hitchcock trailer shows one of his cameos (indicating that cameos must have had great publicity value by then)

• even though John Steinbeck refused to be listed in the film’s credits, his name is mentioned twice in the trailer

• the trailer shows images from Collier’s magazine, which featured the Steinbeck story

Lifeboat

8. Spellbound (1’45”)

<card>
A Selznick International Presentation
<clip: Alfred Hitchcock coming out of the hotel elevator>
<voice>

“Don’t forget this man. He has plenty to do with the terrifying mystery that causes this glamorous woman to risk her life and reputation in a reckless experiment … A woman who, because of her consuming love for this man, gambles everything to unlock the fearful secret in his heart. What insidious meaning did he read into the markings on a tablecloth? Why, even when he held his sweetheart in his arms, did he gaze in fear at the dark lines of her robe? These are some of the clues in the picture which bears Hollywood’s most distinguished mark of quality.”
<sign>
A SELZNICK INTERNATIONAL PICTURE
<card>
“SPELLBOUND”
<clip>
“I take it this is your first honeymoon.” “Yes. I mean, it would be if it were.”
<card>
Alfred Hitchcock’s MOST Suspenseful ACHIEVEMENT!
<still photo of Alfred Hitchcock coming out of the elevator>
<voice>

“We told you not to forget this man. He is Alfred Hitchcock, the famous director, whom you are not likely to forget after you see SPELLBOUND”
<cards>
AN INCOMPARABLE Combination!
INGRID BERGMAN
GREGORY PECK
Together … TO HOLD YOU IRRESISTIBLY …
“SPELLBOUND” AN NTA PICTURES, INC. RE-RELEASE

Remarks:

• this trailer is practically based on a cameo (cf. the previous trailer, Lifeboat, which was the first one to show a cameo at all)

• at first, Hitchcock is simply referred to as “this man”, indicating that his physical appearance was probably fairly well-known by then (and the trailer itself, by showing him again and identifying him as “he is Alfred Hitchcock, the famous director”, enhanced his familiarity with the viewers)

Spellbound Spellbound

9. Notorious

#1 (2’06”)

<cards>
A NOTORIOUS WOMAN OF AFFAIRS!
AN ADVENTUROUS MAN OF THE WORLD!
THEY MEET… AND FALL IN LOVE!
CARY GRANT
INGRID BERGMAN

ALFRED HITCHCOCK’S Notorious!
WITH CLAUDE RAINS
<clip>

“Oh, Dev, Dev.” “I’m sorry to intrude on this tender scene.” “I, I knew her before you did, loved her before you did. I wasn’t as lucky as you.”
<clip>
“I’ll take care of her myself.” “No. Not that way.” “I stood looking at her when she was asleep. I could have …” “Quiet, Alex. You’re almost as impetuous as before your wedding. You barred me from that episode. Let me arrange this one.”
<clip>
“Alicia, what’s wrong?” “I’m so glad you came.” “I had to. I couldn’t stand any more waiting and worrying about you. It wasn’t a hangover you had that day. You were sick then.” “Yes. Yes, I was sick.” “What is it?” “Oh, Dev.” “What is it, dear? What’s wrong with you?” “They’re poisoning me.”
<cards>
DARINGLY DIRECTED BY THAT MASTER OF SUSPENSE ALFRED HITCHCOCK
CARY GRANT
INGRID BERGMAN

WITH CLAUDE RAINS LOUIS CALHERN MADAME KONSTANTIN REINHOLD SCHUNZEL MORONI OLSEN IVAN TRIESAULT ALEX MINOTIS
ALFRED HITCHCOCK’S Notorious!

#2 (2’41”)

<cards>
A NOTORIOUS WOMAN OF AFFAIRS!
AN ADVENTUROUS MAN OF THE WORLD!
THEY MEET … AND FALL IN LOVE!
… RECKLESSLY!
… DARINGLY!
… DANGEROUSLY!
CARY GRANT
INGRID BERGMAN

HAVE THRILLED YOU BEFORE…
BUT NEVER LIKE THIS!
TOGETHER FOR THE FIRST TIME! IN
ALFRED HITCHCOCK’S Notorious!
WITH CLAUDE RAINS
<clip>

“Oh, Dev, Dev.” “I’m sorry to intrude on this tender scene.” “I, I knew her before you did, loved her before you did. I wasn’t as lucky as you.”
<clip>
“I’ll take care of her myself.” “No. Not that way.” “I stood looking at her when she was asleep. I could have …” “Quiet, Alex. You’re almost as impetuous as before your wedding. You barred me from that episode. Let me arrange this one.”
<clip>
“Alicia, what’s wrong?” “I’m so glad you came.” “I had to. I couldn’t stand any more waiting and worrying about you. It wasn’t a hangover you had that day. You were sick then.” “Yes. Yes, I was sick.” “What is it?” “Oh, Dev.” “What is it, dear? What’s wrong with you?” “They’re poisoning me.”
<cards>
A FATEFUL FASCINATION CHARGED WITH MOUNTING DANGER!
A MAD ADVENTURE FRAUGHT WITH BOLD INTRIGUE!
DARINGLY DIRECTED BY THAT MASTER OF SUSPENSE ALFRED HITCHCOCK
CARY GRANT
INGRID BERGMAN

WITH CLAUDE RAINS LOUIS CALHERN MADAME KONSTANTIN REINHOLD SCHUNZEL MORONI OLSEN IVAN TRIESAULT ALEX MINOTIS
ALFRED HITCHCOCK’S Notorious!

#3 (0’52”)

<voice>
“Why are these keys more terrifying than a killer’s knife. See Alfred Hitchcock’s thrilling drama of mystery and intrigue, Notorious! Gems in her hair, ice in her heart. She was a notorious woman of affairs.”
<clip>
“Anything else?” “Nothing important, just a minor item that you may wanted for the record.” “What is it ?” “You can add Sebastian’s name to my list of playmates.”
<voice>
“He was an adventurous man of the world, guarded eyes, guarded lips, guarded secrets. Why did they risk their lives and love for this key. For the answer, see Cary Grant, Ingrid Bergman in Notorious!”
<card>
“Notorious”

Remarks:

• this is the first trailer that skilfully makes use of the concept of the “MacGuffin” (here the “mysterious” key) to arouse the audience’s interest

• the controversy of whether the film’s title would be Notorious or Notorious! is present in the trailers

#4 (0’49”)

<voice>
“Notorious, notorious, notorious. She was a notorious woman of many desires. He was an adventurous man of purpose. Their secret love swept them on to the brink of disaster.”
<clip>
“This is a very strange love affair.” “Why?” “Maybe the fact that you don’t love me.” “When I don’t love you, I’ll let you know.” “You haven’t said anything.” “Action speaks louder than words.”
<voice>
“See Notorious, produced by Alfred Hitchcock, master of suspense. For tense dramatic impact, see Notorious. Starring Cary Grant, Ingrid Bergman in a story of danger and bold intrigue. See Notorious.”
<card>
“Notorious”

#5 (0’14”)

<voice>
“Notorious. All she was, was all he wanted. Their love was a flame in dangerous sinister shadows. See Cary Grant, Ingrid Bergman in Alfred Hitchcock’s Notorious.”
<card>
“Notorious”

Remark:

• the origin of this short trailer is unclear; if it is an original release trailer, then it was certainly not intended for television at this time (1946), but it is very similar to the television spots of later years (see for example, Frenzy [1972])

Notorious

10. The Paradine Case (1’37”)

<voice>
“The Paradine Case”
<cards>
THE PARADINE CASE
PRESENTING THE MOST DISTINGUISHED CAST OF STARS IN SCREEN HISTORY
THE PARADINE CASE Starring
GREGORY PECK
ANN TODD (OF “THE SEVENTH VEIL”)
CHARLES LAUGHTON
CHARLES COBURN
ETHEL BARRYMORE
LOUIS JOURDAN AND Valli
<voice>
“What manner of woman is Mrs Paradine? What is the truth about this woman around whom there raged such a violent storm of conflicting emotions?”
<clip>
“I intend that the whole world shall see her as I do, as a noble, self-sacrificing human being.”
<clip>
“I know what I’m talking about. What I say is true. I know her. And I will tell you one thing more. I will tell you about Mrs. Paradine. She’s bad, bad to the bone.”
<clip>
“I do pity her. Who needs pity more than a woman who’s sinned.”
<voice>
“But from Mrs Paradine’s own lips came unchecked confessions of infamy.”
<clip>
“I ran away with a man. Istanbul, Athens, Cairo.”
“He was much older, of course; rich. He took advantage of your youth.”
“He was married, respected. I took advantage of him.”
<cards>
“THE PARADINE CASE”
AN SRO RE-RELEASE

Remarks:

• the second card (“the most distinguished cast of stars in screen history”) is terribly bombastic

• on the other hand, Hitchcock (who by this time was a big star himself) is not mentioned at all, which is extremely unusual

The Paradine Case

11. Rope

#1 (2’25”)

<card>
NEW YORK One Spring Afternoon
<clip of David Kentley (Dick Hogan) and girlfriend Janet (Joan Chandler) in Central Park>
“I do want to. I just think we ought to wait until after you graduate.” “I don’t.” “It’s only a month.” “Janet, a month.” “Please.” “Sorry. I personally consider us engaged as of now, congratulations.” “David, no.” “Look, you can say yes in a taxi, I have a 2.30 appointment and you’re …” “I’m staying right here.” “Oh, afraid you’ll say ‘Yes’?” “I’ll see you tonight at Brandon’s party.” “OK, you can say ‘Yes’ there just as well as in a taxi. Goodbye, darling.” “Bye.”
<clip of Rupert Cadell (James Stewart)>
“That’s the last time she ever saw him alive, and that’s the last time you’ll ever see him alive. What happened to David Kentley changed my life completely, and the lives of seven others: Janet Walker; Henry Kentley, the boy’s father; his aunt, Mrs Atwater; his best friend, Kenneth Lawrence; the housekeeper named Mrs Wilson; and the two who were responsible for everything, Brandon Shaw and Philip Morgan.”
<cards>
JAMES STEWART
IN ALFRED HITCHCOCK’S ROPE!
<clip>
“Cat and mouse, cat and mouse!” “Philip!” “Which is the cat and which is the mouse?” “That’s enough of it!”
<cards>
with JOHN DALL FARLEY GRANGER SIR CEDRIC HARDWICKE CONSTANCE COLLIER DOUGLAS DICK EDITH EVANSON DICK HOGAN and JOAN CHANDLER
ROPE!
ALFRED HITCHCOCK’S MOST STARTLING ADVENTURE IN SUSPENSE …
<clip>
“He’s got it. He knows, he knows, he knows.” “All right, take it easy. I’ll take care of it.” “No you won’t. I’ll just as soon kill you as kill him.”
<cards>
ROPE!
ALFRED HITCHCOCK TELLS A STORY YOU WILL NEVER FORGET!
ROPE! TECHNICOLOR(R) – A TRANSATLANTIC PICTURES PRODUCTION A METRO-GOLDWYN-MAYER RELEASE

Remarks:

• in marked contrast to the film’s famous long take technique, the trailer is quite conventionally edited, with establishing shots, close-ups and point-of-view shots

– Stevens

several media (mostly press) documents suggest that Hitch wrote and shot the trailer himself, saying: “I’m a little tired of seeing excerpts from next week’s picture flashed on the screen, and being told in the biggest words available not to miss the sensational coming attraction”

• – Hediger, transl. AK

• it’s a very special trailer, with many basic differences from the film (other than the ones mentioned by Stevens): David Kentley plays a much more prominent part in the trailer than in the film; the trailer takes place in the open (in Central Park), while the film takes place entirely in the apartment

• James Stewart gives a speech to the audience (cf. the previous trailers for Suspicion and Saboteur), something that he’ll repeat in the trailers for The Man Who Knew Too Much and Rear Window

• the presentation of all the actors in close-up (during James Stewart’s speech) is also rather unusual (those close-ups were specifically shot for the trailer)

• the ending of the trailer is very effective: we hear a loud shot, but we don’t know who won the struggle. Was it Rupert Cadell or Phillip Morgan (Farley Granger) who’s been shot, etc. (a beautiful example of the skilful trailer, which only reveals so much of the plot that the anxiety in the audience is actually enhanced, instead of being diminished)

• the main musical theme by Francis Poulenc (that is so prominent in the film) can be heard throughout the trailer

#2 (2’05”)

<card>
NEW YORK One Spring Afternoon
<clip of David Kentley and girlfriend Janet in Central Park>
“I do want to. I just think we ought to wait until after you graduate.” “I don’t.” “It’s only a month.” “Janet, a month.” “Please.” “Sorry. I personally consider us engaged as of now, congratulations.” “David, no.” “Look, you can say yes in a taxi, I have a 2.30 appointment and you’re …” “I’m staying right here.” “Oh, afraid you’ll say ‘Yes’?” “I’ll see you tonight at Brandon’s party.” “OK, you can say ‘Yes’ there just as well as in a taxi. Goodbye, darling.” “Bye.”
<clip of Rupert Cadell>
“That’s the last time she ever saw him alive, and that’s the last time you’ll ever see him alive. What happened to David Kentley changed my life completely, and the lives of seven others: Janet Walker; Henry Kentley, the boy’s father; his aunt, Mrs Atwater; his best friend, Kenneth Lawrence; the housekeeper named Mrs Wilson; and the two who were responsible for everything, Brandon Shaw and Philip Morgan.”
<cards>
JAMES STEWART
in ALFRED HITCHCOCK’S
ROPE
with JOHN DALL FARLEY GRANGER SIR CEDRIC HARDWICKE CONSTANCE COLLIER DOUGLAS DICK EDITH EVANSON DICK HOGAN AND JOAN CHANDLER
ROPE
ALFRED HITCHCOCK’S FIRST TECHNICOLOR PICTURE
ROPE
ALFRED HITCHCOCK’S MOST STARTLING ADVENTURE IN SUSPENSE
ROPE
ALFRED HITCHCOCK TELLS A STORY YOU WILL NEVER FORGET
Presented by WARNER BROS. PICTURES
ROPE

Remark:

• here the title is Rope (as opposed to Rope!, as in the previous trailer)

Rope Rope

12. Under Capricorn (2’05”)

<cards>
THE SUSPENSE-MAGIC OF HITCHCOCK …
AN EXCITING CAST OF OUTSTANDING STARS …
SWEEPING ROMANCE AND DRAMA ON A VIOLENT NEW FRONTIER …
“UNDER CAPRICORN”
<voice>
“Under Capricorn, starring Ingrid Bergman, Joseph Cotten, Michael Wilding, Margaret Leighton.”
<cards & voice>
INGRID BERGMAN
JOSEPH COTTEN
MICHAEL WILDING
MARGARET LEIGHTON
<clip>
“I hope you haven’t been giving too much thought to what I said about Mr Adare and her ladyship in her bedroom. I’m sure it wasn’t her fault. She wasn’t what you call responsible at the time. I know she wasn’t, because she had half her clothes off and didn’t seem to notice.”
<clip>
“I wouldn’t go in there, Sam. I tell you she’s had her triumph. You mustn’t spoil this.” “Well! I see. I’m not good enough to stand beside my wife when she’s with a quality.” “Don’t be ridiculous Sam, you aren’t even dressed for a ball.” “Sam! Oh, the shock you gave me! Sir Richard, may I present my husband? We were talking about horses. I was telling His Excellency-” “That I was brought up in a stable. I heard you. My money is as good as the next man’s. The compliments of Mr Samson Flusky, esquire, to pay for my wife’s supper!”
<card>
“UNDER CAPRICORN”
<voice>
Under Capricorn, the story of a strange and fascinating woman and the two men in her life.”
<clip>
“You bloody murdering gentleman-”
<card>
BERGMAN! …
<voice>
“Bergman! Beautiful, tortured.”
<clip>
“Sam!” “Listen-” “Sam!” “What’s the matter? What is it?” “Have you sent this woman here to kill me?”
<cards>
“UNDER CAPRICORN” COLOR BY TECHNICOLOR(R) TRANSATLANTIC PICTURES PRODUCTION A BALBOA FILM DISTRIBUTORS RELEASE

Remark:

• Hitchcock is mentioned, but (contrary to the wonderful trailer for Rope) this one is just a boring collection of clips with the usual style of narration

Under Capricorn

13. Stage Fright (2’05”)

<card>
Jane Wyman Acclaimed Year’s Best Actress!
<voice>
“Climaxing a year of achievement that began with her winning the Academy Award for Johnny Belinda, the popular Warner Brothers star now wins the coveted Photoplay Magazine Gold Medal. This annual award to the actress giving the most popular performance of the year is made after a poll of the people who know the stars best: you, the motion picture goers of the nation. And now Photoplay‘s Fred Sammis [???] makes the presentation.”
<clip of Fred Sammis [???] and Jane Wyman>
“Congratulations, Jane. It is a great honor to present you with Photoplay‘s token of public esteem.”
“Thanks to you, Fred, and to Photoplay magazine, and to everyone. I’m deeply grateful. Thank you.”
<cards>
Now this Great Star joins a Great Director …
Alfred Hitchcock who made ‘SUSPICION’ ‘SPELLBOUND’ ‘NOTORIOUS’ ‘REBECCA’
to bring you a strange case of
“STAGE FRIGHT”
<voice>
“When detective Smith was called backstage to investigate the Inwood murder, it looked like a rather routine affair. He hardly expected it to lead to the most dangerous adventure of his life: romance. The case presented a few clues and a few bodies. A very dead body, a very heavenly body, a very suspicious body, and finally a very charming busy-body who started out by getting tangled in the strings of the mystery and finished by getting tied up in the strings of his heart.”
<cards>
Jane WYMAN
as a girl who led a Double life
… to expose a Double Cross!
Marlene DIETRICH
Michael WILDING
Richard TODD Sensation of ‘The Hasty Heart’
<clip>
“Taking all the trouble to protect my reputation. Covering up the accident. Destroying that dreadful dress.” “I didn’t destroy it. So long as I have the dress, I’m the one who decides how long this show will run. And everything else. Do you understand?”
<clip>
“You fool. There goes evidence that could have helped you.” “You’re not to say things against Charlotte. I’m doing all this for her, see. You’re just jealous of her.”
<clip of Marlene Dietrich singing>
<clip>
“This sounds to me remarkably like blackmail. I think I better call the police.” “Yes, do call the police, Miss Inwood, we’ll talk to them together.” “Who are you ?”
<cards>
The suspense-filled story of a back stage love affair …
that led to a front page murder!
“STAGE FRIGHT”
A Warner Brothers Picture

Stage Fright

14. Strangers on a Train (2’30”)

<cards>
A SPEEDING Train …
A Chance Meeting …
A Strange Toast …
WITH THESE FIBRES OF FATE Alfred Hitchcock WEAVES THE STARTLING Adventure …
that MARKED ONE MAN’S CONSCIENCE with another man’s EVIL!
<clip>
“Two fellows meet, like you and I, no connection between them whatsoever. Each one has somebody that he’d liked to get rid of. So they swap murders!”
<voice>
“Fantastic, isn’t it? You didn’t know when Bruno proposed this fact that he was serious, dead serious. You had made the mistake of speaking to a stranger on a train. And now, wherever you go, whatever you do, you find yourself dominated by his evil presence. And you Bruno. To you, killing was the answer. Murder without clue, without motive. The perfect crime, too perfect. And Ann, life looked very attractive to you until the love in your heart became gripped by a terror that drew you deeper and deeper into this vortex of conspiracy.”
<cards>
“STRANGERS ON A TRAIN”
with THREE STRIKING PERSONALITIES on an EXCITING JOURNEY INTO SUSPENSE!
Farley GRANGER
Ruth ROMAN
Robert WALKER
<clip>
“I don’t like to be double-crossed, I have a murder on my conscience. But it’s not my murder, Mr. Haines.”
<clip>
“I wonder if you know how much I love you.” “Brazen woman, I’m the one to say that.”
<clip at the carousel>
“Hey, hold it!”
<cards>
STRANGER Than Any Fiction You Ever Read!
STRANGER Than Any Picture You Ever Saw!
“STRANGERS ON A TRAIN” A Warner Bros.-First National Picture COPYRIGHT MCMLI BY WARNER BROS. PICTURES, INC.
YOU’LL talk to your Friends about it! BUT you’ll Never talk to … STRANGERS ON A TRAIN!

Remark:

• the trailer starts with three beautifully orchestrated shots (coinciding with the first three cards): a train speeding towards the camera; two men shaking hands; two hands clinking glasses. The first and the third shots are not part of the film, but were specifically filmed for the trailer; the second shot is from the film, but the heads are left out – in the film we see them to be Guy Haines (Farley Granger) and Bruno Anthony (Robert Walker) – in order to conceal who the two persons are

Strangers on a Train

15. I Confess (2’47”)

<cards>
I Confess TO A MURDER …
… SOMEONE ELSE MUST PAY FOR!”
“I Confess TO A GUILT …
… THAT SHATTERED ONE MAN’S LIFE — ANOTHER MAN’S FAITH!
I Confess THAT I TWISTED THE EVIDENCE …
… IN ORDER TO TWIST A NOOSE!”
<clips>
“Why were you being blackmailed?” “You don’t care whom I hurt, just so long as I answer all your questions.” “I only want to clear a murder.”
<voice>
“Caught in a tangled web of murder, three people confessed to secrets that tortured their souls. But in the echoes and shadows of the ancient city of Quebec, Canada, walks a man who knows the whole terrifying truth, but can never tell all the strange things his ears have heard. For he is sworn to silence. Grim silence that points the finger of suspicion at him. Crushing silence that brings him the contempt of the people who loved and respected him. Deadly silence that leads him to the thirteen steps of the gallows.”
<cards>
ELECTRIFYING DRAMA
WITH THE BRAND OF ALFRED HITCHCOCK BURNED INTO EVERY SCENE
“I Confess”
Starring MONTGOMERY CLIFT
ANNE BAXTER
KARL MALDEN
BRIAN AHERNE
<clip>
“Examining his stomach the doctors found that he could not have died before 11.30.” “But Larrue-” “Madame Grandfort said that she left Father Logan at 11. A lot of things can happen in 30 minutes.”
<clip>
“You’re in love with me, you’ve always been in love with me, you haven’t changed.” “I have changed, Ruth, so have you.” “You want me to pretend that?” “Do you understand? I chose to be what I am, I believe in what I am.”
<clip>
“Well, I’m not going to talk about it now.” “What do you want me to do?” “Whatever you wish.”
<cards>
DARK- SO DARK THE DANGER THAT ENGULFS THESE PEOPLE …
STRANGE – SO STRANGE THE CONFLICT THAT GRIPS THEIR LIVES
ALFRED HITCHCOCK’S “I Confess” A Warner Bros.-First National Picture COPYRIGHT MCMLIII by WARNER BROS. PICTURES, INC.

I Confess

16. Dial M for Murder (2’33”)

<cards>
FOR ALFRED HITCHCOCK’S MASTERPIECE
OF MYSTERY AND MELODRAMA
“DIAL M FOR MURDER”
FROM THE STAGE PLAY THAT HELD TWO CONTINENTS
SPELLBOUND WITH SUSPENSE!
Listen … TO THE VOICE OF CRITICS’ PRAISE …
<voice>
The New York Times called it ‘tingling with excitement’.”
<voice>
The Detroit News said: ‘It’s the best crime play in years!’”
<voice>
The London Daily Mail headlined: ‘A murder thriller with a difference.’”
<voice>
The New York Daily Mirror wrote: ‘It holds your attention like a vice.’”
<clip>
“Where’s the nearest police station?” “What could you tell them?” “I should simply tell them that you’re trying to blackmail me into …” “Into …” “Murdering your wife!”
<voice>
“Fantastic, isn’t it? But you know he’s right, don’t you Tony? You’ve worked it out to the smallest detail. And this man is to be your murder weapon, for the perfect crime. And you Margot, you’ve been living dangerously, too dangerously, a married woman with a two-party line to your affections. And Mark, ironic isn’t it, that in this design for death, you should be selected to be the perfect alibi for the murder of the woman you love.”
<clip>
“Are you ever gonna tell Tony … about us?” “No, I couldn’t possibly tell him, not now.”
<clip>
“There is evidence, however, that he was blackmailing you.” “Blackmail?” “Yes, I’m afraid it’s true, Tony.” “And you suggest that he came in by the window and we know that he came in by that door.” “But he can’t have come in that way. That door was locked.” “You could have let him in.”
<cards>
AN EXPERIENCE IN Excitement
THAT WILL TWIST YOUR EMOTIONS INTO TIGHT KNOTS!
RAY MILLAND GRACE KELLY ROBERT CUMMINGS JOHN WILLIAMS ANTHONY DAWSON
“DIAL M FOR MURDER” COLOR BY WARNERCOLOR A Warner Bros.-First National Picture COPYRIGHT MCMLIV BY WARNER BROS. PICTURES, INC.
A direct line to high tension drama YOU’LL NEVER FORGET!

Remarks:

• this trailer starts similarly to that of Strangers on a Train: we hear a shocking excerpt from a dialogue, and then the narrator says: “Fantastic, isn’t it? …”

• there are two (probably intentional) puns: “spellbound” and “knots” (the latter one possibly referring to the author of the play, Frederick Knott)

• the trailer builds very heavily on the critical and popular success of the original stage play

• the original title music is used

• after the card says “listen to the voice of critics’ praise”, a hand lifts up a receiver and holds it in front of the camera, as if the critics were telling their opinions over the phone (this footage was shot specifically for the trailer)

Dial M for Murder Dial M for Murder

17. Rear Window

#1 (2’20”)

<card>
QUIET PLEASE!
<voice>
“Step softly, if you will. This is the scene of the crime. The crime of passion, filmed in a way you’ve never seen before, as no one else would dare attempt to, but the screen’s master of suspense.”
<cards>
ALFRED HITCHCOCK The Director
JAMES STEWART The Star
OF “REAR WINDOW”
<voice of L. B. “Jeff” Jeffries (James Stewart)>
“My name is Jeffries. I’m a news photographer, and my beat is the world. That is, it used to be. Right now my world has shrunk down to the size of this window. I’ve been watching those people across the way. Nobody seems to pull their blinds in a hot spell like this. I know a lot about them by now. Too much, perhaps. For instance, down there on the second floor, that woman pacing about. I call her Miss Lonelyhearts. So lonely that even death seems like a friend. Those are the newlyweds, on a honeymoon no one will ever forget. The songwriter, over there. Over and over again, the same melody. A genius or insane? That’s the travelling salesman with his invalid wife. Out of their arguments and nagging comes a weird kind of love. Miss Torso. The body beautiful. That is, viewed from a safe distance.”
<clip of Jeffries>
“Those are just a few of my neighbours. First I watched them just to kill time, but then I couldn’t take my eyes off them, just as you won’t be able to.”
<voice>
“And you won’t be able to take your eyes off the glowing beauty of the screen’s most alluring new personality, Grace Kelly, who reaches the peak of her sensational rise to stardom in this story of a romance shadowed by the terror of a horrifying secret. For they had stared too long and seen too much through the ‘Rear Window’.”
<cards>
“REAR WINDOW”
THE SUSPENSE MASTERPIECE FROM
ALFRED HITCHCOCK THE SCREEN’S MASTER OF SUSPENSE
starring JAMES STEWART co-starring GRACE KELLY WENDELL COREY THELMA RITTER with RAYMOND BURR
“REAR WINDOW” COLOR BY TECHNICOLOR
Directed by ALFRED HITCHCOCK A PARAMOUNT RELEASE

Remarks:

the trailer provides several clips that don’t make the actual film (the newlyweds enjoying a quiet moment together, a woman [James Stewart] calls ‘Ms. Hearing Aid’ sculpting ‘a very odd and strange art’)

• – www.movietrailertrash.com

• the first trailer in which we actually see Hitchcock in the process of ‘directing’

• the usual procedure of the 1940s returns: the protagonist tells us (looking straight in the camera) who he is, what he’s doing and why this may interest the audience

• the trailer doesn’t reveal in which apartment the murder will take place, who the ‘tragical’ heroes and who the ‘comical’ heroes are going to be in the film (except for one telling detail: of all the actors playing the neighbours, only Raymond Burr’s name is mentioned in the credits)

• the trailer has different music from Franz Waxmann’s score for the film

#2 (2’38”)

<voice>
“This is the scene of the crime. A crime of passion filmed in a way you have never seen before and as no one else would dare attempt but the screen’s master of suspense, the producer director who shocked the world with Psycho.”
<cards>
ALFRED HITCHCOCK
Starring JAMES STEWART
in “REAR WINDOW”
<voice>
“This is the apartment of a man named Jeffries, a news photographer whose beat used to be the world. Right now his world has shrunk down to the size of this window. He’s been watching the people across the way. Nobody seems to pull their blinds during a hot spell like this. He knows a lot about them by now, too much perhaps. For instance, down there on the second floor, the woman pacing about. He calls her Miss Lonelyhearts, so lonely that even death seems like a friend. These are the newlyweds, on a honeymoon no one will ever forget. He calls her Miss Hearing Aid, an artist of a very odd and strange art. The songwriter who plays the same melody over and over again. A genius or insane? This is the travelling salesman and his invalid wife. Out of their arguments and nagging comes a weird kind of love. Miss Torso. The body beautiful. That is, viewed from a safe distance.”
<clip of Jeffries>
“Those are just a few of my neighbours. First I watched them just to kill time, but then I couldn’t take my eyes off them, just as you won’t be able to …”
<voice>
“And you won’t be able to take your eyes off the glowing beauty of Grace Kelly, who shares the heart and curiosity of James Stewart in this story of a romance shadowed by the terror of a horrifying secret.”
<cards>
“REAR WINDOW”
THE SUSPENSE MASTERPIECE from
ALFRED HITCHCOCK THE SCREEN’S MASTER OF SUSPENSE
Starring JAMES STEWART Co-starring GRACE KELLY WENDELL COREY THELMA RITTER with RAYMOND BURR
in “REAR WINDOW” TECHNICOLOR(R)
Directed by ALFRED HITCHCOCK A PARAMOUNT RE-RELEASE
SEE IT! if your nerves can stand it after “PSYCHO”
… and see it from the beginning of course!

Remark:

• this re-release trailer must have been made around 1960, since the last card refers to Psycho

Rear Window Rear Window

18. To Catch a Thief (1’54”)

<cards>
ALFRED HITCHCOCK
Invites You To JOIN
CARY GRANT
AND GRACE KELLY
ON A BREATHTAKING RACE
“TO CATCH A THIEF”

<voice>
“Cary Grant and this year’s Academy Award winner Grace Kelly. Two exciting personalities who were made for each other and now Alfred Hitchcock brings them into very close contact in this perfect tale of romantic intrigue, filmed on the beautiful French Riviera.”
<clip>
“You have a very strong grip, the kind a burglar needs.” “That’s why you came out here, isn’t it ?”
<voice>
“The scandalous romance that shocked even the blasé international set, between this restless, thrill-hunting, American heiress and the notorious man of mystery the French underworld called The Cat. For the game they played was not played for money, and the characters they played with played for keeps. No one but Hitchcock could create such relentless excitement, filling the screen with fireworks as he matches the blazing talents of these two great stars in the love affair of the year.”
<clip>
“Look John, hold them, diamonds. Have you ever had a better offer in your whole life. One with everything.”
<cards>
WHO COULD ASK FOR ANYTHING MORE?
CARY GRANT and GRACE KELLY FOR Romance
GORGEOUS SPECTACLE IN VISTAVISION
AND THAT HEART-STOPPING HITCHCOCK SUSPENSE!
<clip>

“Come down Robie, or we shall be forced to shoot.”
<cards>
“TO CATCH A THIEF”
Starring
CARY GRANT AND GRACE KELLY
With Jessie Royce Landis John Williams.
PHOTOGRAPHED IN VISTAVISION MOTION PICTURE HIGH-FIDELITY
ALFRED HITCHCOCK’S “TO CATCH A THIEF” COLOR BY TECHNICOLOR Directed by Alfred Hitchcock

Remarks:

• this trailer starts with the original music

• the second Hitchcock trailer to exploit an Academy Award (Grace Kelly’s)

• the famous kiss of John Robie (Cary Grant) and Frances Stevens (Grace Kelly) is shown from a different angle than in the film (it may be the same shot the end of which – where Robie turns into the camera with a half-smile on his face – can be seen in the film)

• the first Hitchcock trailer in which the threat of television can be detected (it mentions “gorgeous spectacle in VistaVision”)

To Catch a Thief - trailer To Catch a Thief - film

To Catch a Thief – trailer                                         To Catch a Thief – film

19. The Trouble with Harry

#1 (2’12”)

<cards>
PARAMOUNT PRESENTS
“AUTUMN in VERMONT”
IN
VISTAVISION MOTION PICTURE HIGH-FIDELITY
<voice>
“Come with us to beautiful New England as our VistaVision camera fills the screen with the gorgeous panorama of its scenic splendours. For this is that perfect moment in time when the magic wand of autumn touches its rolling historic hills and transforms them into a veritable wonderland of dazzling colours. Here we find the Indian summer that the pilgrims gloried in. For now even as in that long distant day, mother nature offers its bounty for the thankful eyes of those fortunate enough to share it. In the charming little villages living with the heirlooms of their storied past. The azure waters of the tranquil lakes, a covered bridge spanning the lazy waters of a rippling stream, the golden boughs of a majestic maple shading the deep blue skies. And here in the peaceful woods every little boy is the monarch of all he surveys. His trusty space gun a deadly weapon to defend himself against the dangers of the unknown. A child at play. While all around him the countryside slumbers as quietly as … as this wayfaring stranger who is paused in this lovely glade for a restful nap in the sun. But wait a moment. Something’s wrong here. This man isn’t sleeping. He’s dead!”
<cards>
AND ALFRED HITCHCOCK DID IT …
IN A COMPLETELY DIFFERENT WAY
FOR YOU’VE NEVER SEEN ANYTHING LIKE
“THE TROUBLE WITH HARRY”
<voice>
“The trouble with Harry is that he’s dead and one of these real nice people could have caused that trouble. Perhaps the sweet old sea-captain, who actually wasn’t a very good shot, or the New England spinster, who would go to any lengths to defend her honor, or the enchanting redhead, who had been Harry’s unkissed bride, or the unconventional artist, who was mad about Harry’s widow, or the bum, who needed a new pair of shoes, or the nearsighted surgeon, who liked to read poetry out loud. Yes, the unconventional Mr Hitchcock has done it again, just as he did with Rear Window, playing a most unusual story against a new and different background. And the only trouble is, you won’t stop laughing at The Trouble With Harry.”
<cards>
“THE TROUBLE WITH HARRY.”
STARRING Edmund GWENN John FORSYTHE
with MILDRED NATWICK MILDRED DUNNOCK and introducing SHIRLEY MacLAINE
ALFRED HITCHCOCK’S Comedy About A Body
“The TROUBLE WITH HARRY” COLOR BY TECHNICOLOR

Remarks:

• it seems very probable that Hitchcock was involved in the creation of this trailer

• it beautifully captures the mood of the film (especially during the first long narration)

• Bernard Herrmann’s original music is used

#2 (2’20”)

<voice>
“Once upon a time in a quiet little town,”
<card>
Alfred Hitchcock presents
<voice>
“some very respectable people got into the trouble with Harry.”
<card>
THE TROUBLE WITH HARRY
<voice, with the 5 names on cards too>
“John Forsythe, Edmund Gwenn, Mildred Natwick, Shirley MacLaine in her screen debut, and Jerry Mathers are all involved. It’s a most unfortunate situation, because the trouble with Harry is, well, he’s dead”.
<clip>
“What did I tell you, Mommy?” “Don’t touch it, Arnie!” “There he is!” “Harry, thank Providence, the last of Harry!”
<clip>
“He’s dead.” “Yes. Doesn’t live around here.” “Well, he died around here, that’s what counts now.” “Embarrassing.”
<clip>
“An accident, pure and simple. I thought it was a rabbit or a pheasant or something.”
<clip>
“I hit him over the head with the milk bottle and knocked him silly.”
<clip>
“What do you call it?” “Dead. It ain’t mine.”
<clip>
“After all, I killed him.”
<clip>
“You see, we don’t know quite what to do with Harry. Thought you might have some suggestions.” “You can stuff him, for all I care. Stuff him and put him in a glass case. Only I’d suggest frosted glass.”
<clip>
“I only brought up your name once when we were talking about strange people.”
<clip>
“Oh, I beg your pardon.”
<clip>
“Hey, what’s he doing in our bath tub?”
<voice>
“It’s a delightful little romantic comedy that just happens to revolve around a corpse.”
<voice & cards>
“Alfred Hitchcock presents: THE TROUBLE WITH HARRY”
<voice>
“You’ll want to get into it.”

Remark:

• the card “Alfred Hitchcock Presents” anticipates the television series (which, in any case, was intimately related to this film)

The Man Who Knew Too MuchThe Trouble with Harry (3’00”)

<cards>
What is more DELIGHTFUL than MURDER …
When it is given the Careful Planning and Loving Care …
of such a MASTER of the MACABRE …
as ALFRED HITCHCOCK?
and Here, on the Same Program,
are TWO of his best EXCURSIONS into TERROR!
FIRST …
JAMES STEWART Introduces You to …
“THE MAN WHO KNEW TOO MUCH”
<clip of James Stewart>
“As you know, Alfred Hitchcock has an uncanny knack for coming up with the unusual in entertainment. Well, The Man Who Knew Too Much can certainly be put in that category. That was the signal that brought all the trouble out in the open. A scene from our new picture The Man Who Knew Too Much. I play the part of an American doctor, Doris Day is my wife, and the story is about our trip abroad that started out as a holiday and ended up as a nightmare in the great concert hall, where the cue for murder was one single crash of the cymbals.”
<cards>
“THE MAN WHO KNEW TOO MUCH”
STARRING JAMES STEWART DORIS DAY IN …
ALFRED HITCHCOCK’S Inimitable International Intrigue!
“THE MAN WHO KNEW TOO MUCH” TECHNICOLOR(R) A PARAMOUNT RE-RELEASE
<cards>
AND ON THE SAME PROGRAM THIS COMPLETELY DIFFERENT THRILLER …
THE TROUBLE WITH HARRY
<voice>

“The trouble with Harry is that he’s dead but unburied. And too many people think they killed him. Perhaps the sweet old sea-captain, who actually wasn’t a very good shot, or the New England spinster, who would go to any lengths to defend her honor, or the enchanting redhead, who had been Harry’s unkissed bride, or the unconventional artist, who was mad about Harry’s widow, or the bum, who needed a new pair of shoes, or the nearsighted surgeon, who liked to read poetry out loud. Yes, the unconventional Mr Hitchcock has done it again, just as he did with Rear Window, playing a most unusual story against a new and different background. The perfect setting for an impossible, incredible, amazing murder.”
<cards>
“THE TROUBLE WITH HARRY “
STARRING EDMUND GWENN JOHN FORSYTHE
WITH MILDRED NATWICK MILDRED DUNNOCK And introducing SHIRLEY MacLAINE
The Most Frequently Buried Corpse In Alfred Hitchcock’s History!
“THE TROUBLE WITH HARRY” TECHNICOLOR(R) A PARAMOUNT RE-RELEASE
A HITCHCOCK FESTIVAL OF ADVENTURE! INTRIGUE! MURDER! AND SUSPENSE!
“THE MAN WHO KNEW TOO MUCH” AND “THE TROUBLE WITH HARRY”

Remarks:

• the first trailer starts with Bernard Herrmann’s title music for the film

• the already often-seen device is used: one of the characters (dressed in his/her costume, seen in the set) looks into the camera and talks to the audience about the film, but here James Stewart speaks as himself instead of as the character, and not only about the film, but also about Hitchcock and Doris Day

• the proper order of images of Louis Bernard (Daniel Gélin) with the knife in his back and those of Dr Ben McKenna (James Stewart) wiping his hands are reversed in the trailer

The Trouble with Harry

The Trouble with Harry The Trouble with Harry

20. The Man Who Knew Too Much

#1 (2’10”)

<clip>
“Ladies and gentleman, the famous Miss Doris Day has gladly consented to sing a few songs for us tonight.” “Que Sera, Sera, whatever will be, will be. The future’s not ours to see, Que Sera, Sera.”
<clip of James Stewart>
“You’re right. That was a gunshot you heard. That was the signal that brought all the trouble out in the open. It’s a scene from our new picture, The Man Who Knew Too Much. As you know, Alfred Hitchcock has an uncanny knack for coming up with the unusual in entertainment. Well, The Man Who Knew Too Much can certainly be put in that category. I play the part of an American doctor, Doris Day is my wife. And the story is about our trip abroad that started out as a holiday and ended up as a nightmare. And to film it, Hitchcock took us thousands of miles away from Hollywood to Marrakech, which is right in the centre of the North African trouble area. And that was just the beginning. From there we flew to London, for backgrounds of a whole strange series of events that ended up that final night in the great concert hall, where the cue for murder was one single crash of the cymbals.”
<clips: Jo McKenna (Doris Day) screams; Marrakech>

Remark:

• in the ambassador’s speech the name “Doris Day” is dubbed over the name “Jo Conway”

#2 (2’00”)

<clip>
“Ladies and gentleman, the famous Miss Doris Day has gladly consented to sing a few songs for us tonight.” “Que Sera, Sera, whatever will be, will be. The future’s not ours to see, Que Sera, Sera.”
<clip of James Stewart>
“You’re right. That was a gunshot you heard. That was the signal that brought all the trouble out in the open. It’s a scene from our new picture, The Man Who Knew Too Much. As you know, Alfred Hitchcock has an uncanny knack for coming up with the unusual in entertainment. Well, The Man Who Knew Too Much can certainly be put in that category. I play the part of an American doctor, Doris Day is my wife. And the story is about our trip abroad that started out as a holiday and ended up as a nightmare. And to film it, Hitchcock took us thousands of miles away from Hollywood to Marrakech, which is right in the centre of the North African trouble area. And that was just the beginning. From there we flew to London, for backgrounds of a whole strange series of events that ended up that final night in the great concert hall, where the cue for murder was one single crash of the cymbals.”
<clips: Doris Day screams; Marrakech>
<cards>
ALFRED HITCHCOCK Strikes …
The Highest Note of SUSPENSE …
The Screen Has Yet ACHIEVED!
“The Man Who Knew Too Much”
Starring
JAMES STEWART DORIS DAY
IN
VISTAVISION

The Man Who Knew Too Much

21. The Wrong Man

#1 (0’51”)

<cards>
DO YOU HAVE A DOUBLE?
Alfred Hitchcock HOLDS THE MIRROR UP TO LIFE …
AND CATCHES
HENRY FONDA
VERA MILES
AND THE Exciting CITY OF NEW YORK
in Alfred Hitchcock’s “The Wrong Man”
<voice>
“A true life story so suspenseful that only Hitchcock could film it. A man in love, mistaken for his double and wanted by the police. Somewhere, somewhere in New York’s crowded streets, shadowed subways or the Stork Club, there must be the right man”.
<card>
Alfred Hitchcock’s “The Wrong Man” Presented by WARNER BROS.

Remarks:

• a very unusual trailer (cf. Mr. & Mrs. Smith) which uses only still photos, no movie footage

• in just 51 seconds, Hitchcock is mentioned three times

#2 (2’24”)

<clip of Alfred Hitchcock (same setting as in the film’s prologue)>
“Alfred Hitchcock speaking. In the past I have introduced you to many kinds of people, murderers, thieves, swindlers, many of them geniuses at the business of crime. Now I’d like you to meet an entirely different person. An average sort of fellow, who leads a very normal life. The big difference is that his story is true. This is Manny Balestrero, tucked away at the rear of the bandstand at the Stork Club in New York. He lived in a simple routine world. When the lights went out, the fiddle was put away. Then the same subway, the newspaper, home to Rose and the kids. Yes, Manny’s life was straight and narrow, until the night of January the fourteenth, 1953, when-”
<clip>
“Is your name Christopher Emmanuel Balestrero?” “Yes, it is.” “We wanna speak to you, we’re police officers.” “What about?”
<clip>
“How do you explain it?” “I made a mistake.” “So did the hold-up man. And it happens to be the same mistake.”
<clip>
“Do you see the man who was in your office on July the ninth in this courtroom?” “Yes.” “Will you step down and point him out to us?” “Right there.”
<voice of Alfred Hitchcock>
“What twist of fate could take the quiet soul of a simple man and wring it into a shape like this?”
<cards>
Somewhere Somewhere THERE MUST BE THE RIGHT MAN …!
EVERY STEP A JOURNEY IN DARKNESS
EVERY MOMENT AN ETERNITY OF SUSPENSE
The WRONG MAN”
Starring HENRY FONDA
as Manny Balestrero
VERA MILES
as Rose Balestrero
The WRONG MAN” A Warner Bros. PICTURE COPYRIGHT MCMLVII BY WARNER BROS. PICTURES, INC.
ALFRED HITCHCOCK’S POWERFUL PORTRAIT OF A MAN … DRAWN FROM LIFE!

Remark:

• the first time Hitchcock introduces the film in a trailer (cf. Cecil B. DeMille’s appearances in trailers); the same setting, possibly even exactly the same footage is used as in the film’s prologue – we see Hitchcock’s dark figure on a soundstage – but the speech (the soundtrack) is different

• the trailer features Bernard Herrmann’s original “jazzy” score

The Wrong Man

To Part 2

Special thanks to Lisa Devereux Kernan (UCLA).

Bibliography

Dan Auiler: Hitchcock’s Secret Notebooks, Bloomsbury, 1999.

Laurent Bouzereau: The Alfred Hitchcock Quote Book, Citadel Press, 1993.

Michael Goodwin: “The Lost Films of Alfred Hitchcock”, New West, April 1981.

Vincenz Hediger: “L’image de l’auteur dans la publicité”, in: Politique des auteurs et théories du cinéma, L’Harmattan, 2002.

Brad Stevens: In Praise of Trailers”, Senses of Cinema, Sept–Oct 2000.

Kenneth Turan: “The Lure of Trailers”, American Film, October 1982.

www.movietrailertrash.com.

About The Author

Nándor Bokor is a physicist with the Department of Physics, Budapest University of Technology and Economics. He is the editor of the Hungarian edition of François Truffaut's book Hitchcock.

Alain Kerzoncuf has already published three pieces on Hitchcock, “Hitch and the Remakes”, and two pieces with Nándor Bokor: a work on the French Riviera locations used in To Catch a Thief, and “Alfred Hitchcock’s Trailers”.