Tuesday, August 13, 2002

One of the projects that I hinted at yesterday was supposed to be a non-fiction book about the Bay Area films of Alfred Hitchcock. I first had the idea a few months ago, when we went on a Hitch binge and had a little Hitchcock home video festival - that's pretty much all we watched for a month.

Hitch made three specifically Bay Area films: Shadow of a Doubt (Santa Rosa), Vertigo (San Francisco and southern Marin County), and The Birds (SF and Bodega Bay). In addition to these three films that took place in the region (as well as being shot here), Hitch kept a second home (his "ranch" and vineyard) in Scotts Valley (Santa Cruz), and used the area's locations to double for the English countryside and coastline in Rebecca, Suspicion, and Marnie, as well as extra locations, or inspiration, for a number of other films.

When Leslie go on our little weekend trips, whether it's passing through Santa Rosa and having a snack at the train station where Uncle Charlie (Joseph Cotton) arrived and departed from in Shadow of a Doubt, or walking through the Muir Woods where Scottie (Jimmy Stewart) chased Madeline/Judy (Kim Novak) in Vertigo, we've sought out many of these locations. On several occasions it occurred to me that I ought to track these voyages and map the sites and use them as a basis for film/travel book.

Well, the project had just gone from a concept to something I was actually starting to work on, and then yesterday I found this: Footsteps in the Fog, "Alfred Hitchcock's San Francisco," to be released in October 2002. Somebody else has written my book, and it looks like they did a good job with it, too! Luckily I hadn't invested too much time into the project yet, and certainly nothing I didn't enjoy doing. Now I just can't wait till October so I can see if it includes directions to Hitch's Scotts Valley ranch.

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