Writing with Hitchcock: The Collaboration of Alfred Hitchcock and John Michael Hayes
An entertaining, in-depth look at the films, including Rear Window, made by Alfred Hitchcock with screenwriter John Michael Hayes.
In spring 1953, the great director Alfred Hitchcock decided to take a chance and work with a young writer, John Michael Hayes. The decision turned out to be a pivotal one, for the four films that Hitchcock made with Hayes over the next several years -- Rear Window, To Catch a Thief, The Trouble with Harry, and The Man Who Knew Too Much -- represented an extraordinarily successful change of style. Each of the movies was distinguished by a combination of glamorous stars, sophisticated dialogue, and inventive plots -- James Stewart and Grace Kelly trading barbs in the tensely plotted Rear Window, Cary Grant and Grace Kelly engaging in witty repartee in To Catch a Thief -- and resulted in some of Hitchcock's most distinctive and intimate work, based in large part on Hayes's exceptional scripts.
Exploring for the first time the details of this collaboration, Steven DeRosa follows Hitchcock and Hayes through each film from initial discussions to completed picture and presents an analysis of each screenplay. He also reveals the personal story -- filled with inspiration and humor, jealousy and frustration -- of the initial synergy between the two very different men before their relationship fell apart. Writing with Hitchcock not only provides new insight into four films from a master but also sheds light on the process through which classic motion pictures are created.