Pat Hitchcock, daughter of Alfred Hitchcock, deceased at 93 – .

Pat Hitchcock, daughter of Alfred Hitchcock, deceased at 93 – .

NEW YORK (AP) – Patricia Hitchcock O’Connell, Alfred Hitchcock’s only child and actress herself who made a memorable appearance in her father’s “Strangers on a Train” and has championed her work in the decades that followed her death, died at age 93.

Hitchcock died in her sleep at her home in Thousand Oaks, Calif., Her daughter Tere Carrubba said on Wednesday. She died of natural causes, Carrubba said.

“She was always very good at protecting my grandparents’ legacy and making sure they are always remembered,” said Carrubba, one of Patricia Hitchcock’s three daughters. “It’s kind of the end of an era now that they’re all gone. “

Known to many as Pat Hitchcock, she was born in London to Alfred Hitchcock and Alma Reville Hitchcock in 1928 and has spent much of her life in and around the family business. During his childhood, Alfred Hitchcock directed classics such as “The 39 Steps”, “The Lady Vanishes” and “Shadow of a Doubt”, moved to California after signing a multi-picture contract with producer David O Selznick and became world famous as the “Master of Suspense”. Alma was his indispensable advisor, a former film editor through whom he verified story ideas and screenplay treatments.

“My mom had a lot more to do with movies than she ever got credit for – he depended on her for everything, absolutely everything,” Pat Hitchcock told The Guardian in 1999.

Pat visited her father’s film sets, and as a teenager she acted in school plays and performed on stage, including the Broadway productions “Solitaire” and “Violet.” She was admitted to the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London in 1947 and was about to graduate when her father contacted her and told her he had a role for her in his new film, ” Strangers on a Train ”, adapted from the novel by Patricia Highsmith. The 1951 production starred Robert Walker and Farley Granger as strangers who meet on a train and agree – at least Walker thinks they agree – to a double murder: Walker will kill the woman de Granger and Granger will kill Walker’s father. Pat Hitchcock plays the sister of a woman (Ruth Roman), with whom Granger is in love.

Walker duly takes his side, strangling Granger’s wife on the grounds of an amusement park, and pressuring Granger to honor the deal. He shows up at a party that Granger attends and talks to an elderly woman about the best way to kill someone: strangulation. He has placed his hands on his neck, when he looks up and sees Pat Hitchcock staring at him in horror. Angered by his resemblance to his murder victim – they wear similar glasses – he almost suffocates the guest to death. Hitchcock’s character later sobs that she felt like she was the one he could have killed, which led to suspicions about the murder of Granger’s wife.

“I think he was using it as an audience,” Pat Hitchcock, interviewed for a 1997 BBC special about his father, said of his character. “I think he made him go through what the audience went through. “

Hitchcock was a lively and witty actress with a heart-shaped face and her other acting credits included the television sitcoms “My Little Margie” and “The Life of Riley” and several roles in the “Alfred Hitchcock” television series. Presents ”. She also played roles in her father’s “Stage Fright” and in her horror masterpiece “Psycho”, in which she plays an office colleague of Janet Leigh, who later in the film is famously stabbed. to death in a motel shower.

Most recently, she worked for Alfred Hitchcock’s Mystery Magazine, appeared at numerous film festivals and in numerous Hitchcock documentaries, and contributed photographs and a preface to “Footsteps in the Fog: Alfred Hitchcock’s San Francisco By Jeff Kraft and Aaron Leventhal. She also co-wrote a book about her mother, who died in 1982, “Alma Hitchcock: The Woman Behind the Man”. (Alfred Hitchcock died in 1980).

Pat Hitchcock was married for over 40 years to Joseph O’Connell, who died in 1994. They had three children.

She insisted that her childhood was happy and that her parents were normal, but she was not spared by her father’s aloof and controlling nature and his biased and sometimes cruel sense of humor. As a girl, she often ate on her own, was sent to boarding school and deprived of a college education when her father decided she should return to England instead. She would regret that he did not choose her in more of his films.

“I would have liked him to believe in nepotism,” she liked to say.

At home, the director once painted her a clown face while she slept, anticipating her shock when she woke up the next morning and first looked at herself in a mirror. While filming “Strangers on a Train,” knowing her fear of heights, he bet her $ 100 that she wouldn’t ride a Ferris wheel on set. She took issue with a story in Donald Spoto’s 1983 biography “The Dark Side of Genius” that he left her stranded and terrified for an hour.

“What happened was they turned the lights off and pretended to go away – for all I would say 35 seconds – and they turned on the lights and we went downstairs,” she told the Chicago Tribune in 1993. “The only ‘sadistic’ part is that I never got the hundred dollars.


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