[Movies] Helen Mirren Says She Didn't Like Alfred Hitchcock
Posted by Joseph Lee on 11.27.2012
She actually met him...
In an interview with The Huffington Post to promote her new film Hitchcock, Helen Mirren said she didn't like the titular director on which the film is based.
On working with first time director Sacha Gervasi: "You just have to trust your instincts. If you always try to work with experienced directors [you'll never work]. I loved Sacha's film, "Anvil." It's very hard to make a good documentary because it's the question of finding the story in the material. He did that so well with "Anvil." There was an absolute story there, with a beginning, middle and end, and with characters and development. So, he had a clear sense of drama. Also, the fact that he had written a lot and been around a lot of film sets; it wasn't like someone just coming out of film school. All of that aside, though, it was his enthusiasm; I just liked him. In the end, I loved the character and loved the script, so what do you do but go ahead and see what happens?"
On meeting Alfred Hitchcock: "I did. When I was a very young actress, just starting out, I was sent for an audition -- or a meeting with him. I don't think he would have auditioned me; I think he either thought you looked right or you didn't. I was arrogant and ignorant and, at that time, he was just not my kind of film director. I was into Federico Fellini, Pier Paolo Pasolini, Roberto Rossellini; those were the directors I loved. I was, you know, as one is when one is young, just ridiculously self-opinionated. So, I didn't really like him, and I know he didn't like me very much. He certainly didn't cast me. He took one look at me and went, "Oh, good God. She's going to be a nightmare." [Laughs] It was for "Frenzy," the film he was making in London. I didn't want to do it because all those roles were horrible anyway."
On what surprised her about Anthony Hopkins: "I think his kindness, actually. His kindness and his generosity. You know, he's Welsh; and he's very volcanic and complicated. But that doesn't interfere with being extremely kind and extremely supportive of all people around him. Quite honestly, it was weird for me, because all the hours of the day that I was on set with him, he looked like Hitch. And he was Hitch. In a weird way, Tony -- in my mind -- became Hitch. That's who Tony Hopkins was. I hated seeing him take his face off. But at the end of the day he would just rip it off, because he was so sick of [the makeup]. He would pull it off in this weird movement. I hated that, because that was the man that I loved. Do you know what I mean? Then, when the real Tony was there, it was like, "Who's that? That's the famous actor Tony Hopkins?" [Laughs]"