12 July 2014

Hitchcock's act of kindness

A big part of Hitchcock's "The Birds" (1963) was filmed at the Universal Studios, but the exterior scenes were shot in Bodega Bay, California. In March 1962, while on location in Bodega Bay, Hitch stopped by a local school one morning to meet a group of school children. His visit had such a positive impact on one of the children that Duncan Coleman, the school's principal, wanted to thank Hitchcock and wrote him the following letter on 3 April 1962.

Hitchcock on location for "The Birds" with leading man Rod Taylor
Via: brainpickings


3775 Bodega Highway
Petaluma, California

April 3, 1962

Mr. Alfred Hitchcock
Alfred Hitchcock Productions
Bodega Bay, California

Dear Mr. Hitchcock:

I wanted to take the time to say that your stopping one morning on your way to Bodega Bay to give a group of children a drawing and autograph of you was certainly a deed of thoughtfulness. It is realized that taking the time from your busy schedule is not an easy thing to do.

The real purpose of this letter is to inform you what your deed of kindness did for a boy to whom you gave your drawing and autograph. This boy is quite shy and does not participate readily in class activities, such as sharing his experiences before others during sharing time. He was so thrilled and moved by his experience that he proudly shared his experience and autograph, not only with his own class, but in every classroom in the school. The boy never before has done such a thing. Many times it takes such a spark as this to help a youngster out of his shell and on the road to confidence. You don't realize what your act of kindness has done for this boy.

I realize that many other people since then have tried to take advantage of the same opportunity and this has made it difficult and impossible for you to fulfill. None the less, your thoughtful act will not be forgotten by youngsters and teachers alike.


Duncan Coleman

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