Alfred Hitchcock’s film “Psycho”

Alfred Hitchcock’s film Psycho

“Psycho” is a groundbreaking horror film directed by Alfred Hitchcock and released in 1960. It is based on the 1959 novel of the same name by Robert Bloch. The film, starring Anthony Perkins, Janet Leigh, Vera Miles, and John Gavin, has become a classic, significantly influencing the horror genre and popular culture.

Dates and Details:

  • “Psycho” was released on June 16, 1960.
  • The film was produced on a low budget of approximately $800,000 but grossed over $50 million worldwide.
  • Alfred Hitchcock chose to shoot the film in black and white to save costs and to make the violent scenes less graphic.
  • The famous shower scene took seven days to shoot, with 77 different camera angles and over 50 cuts.

Psycho Facts:

  1. Hitchcock purchased the rights to Robert Bloch’s novel for $9,500 and reportedly bought as many copies of the book as possible to keep the ending a secret.
  2. The Bates Motel and house were constructed on the backlot of Universal Studios, where they still stand as a tourist attraction.
  3. The film’s score, composed by Bernard Herrmann, consists primarily of string instruments, creating the movie’s iconic, eerie sound.
  4. “Psycho” was the first American film to show a toilet flushing on-screen.
  5. Chocolate syrup was used for blood in the shower scene due to its appearance in black and white.
  6. Hitchcock made a cameo in the film, as he did in many of his movies. In “Psycho,” he can be seen wearing a cowboy hat through a window.
  7. Anthony Perkins, who played Norman Bates, did not receive an Oscar nomination for his performance, despite the acclaim he received.
  8. “Psycho” was initially met with mixed reviews but went on to receive four Academy Award nominations, including Best Director for Hitchcock.

Effects on Pop Culture:

  • “Psycho” has had a lasting impact on the horror genre, inspiring numerous films, including the slasher subgenre.
  • The film has been referenced and parodied in various forms of media, such as television shows, movies, and music.
  • The shower scene has become one of cinema’s most famous and studied scenes.
  • The character Norman Bates has become a cultural icon, with the name “Bates” being synonymous with homicidal, disturbed individuals.

Prominent People and Countries:

  • Alfred Hitchcock (United Kingdom): Director of the film, one of the most influential filmmakers of all time.
  • Anthony Perkins (United States): Actor who portrayed Norman Bates, garnering widespread praise for his performance.
  • Janet Leigh (United States): Actress who played Marion Crane, earning a Golden Globe and an Academy Award nomination for her role.
  • Bernard Herrmann (United States): Composer of the film’s iconic score, which has become a classic in its own right.

“Psycho” remains a significant milestone in cinema’s history, illustrating Alfred Hitchcock’s genius and innovative storytelling power. Its influence can still be felt in contemporary horror films, and the film’s characters, scenes, and music continue to resonate with audiences worldwide.