Alfred Hitchcock expressed himself simply and slowly and yet was eminently emotive. I’ve heard many impressions of the man – they are easy to do – but they always leave out his soul. That dour sensibility was so interesting, I think, because Hitchcock often seemed more implacable than he really was. His films made him seem mysterious. It’s unsurprising that some people thought his movies could only come from one who is psychologically bent. But Hitchcock is serene and congenial in real life, in spite of his demeanor – he privileged himself as a practical joker. Instead, his real genius was in taking commonplace fears and exacerbating them, sometimes to disproportionate levels.
Hitchcock discusses such matters in this one hour interview, once considered lost, with Tom Snyder, along with his fear of cops, the perception that some had of him, his Jesuit background, and the jokes he had played on others. It’s an interesting and candid interview, in what was meant to be a comfortable conversation: he sinks into the yellow chair and has a glass of wine at his side. You can watch all six parts below.