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By Candy Pilar Godoy, Contributing Reporter

RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – A wave of terror has washed over the Centro Cultural Banco do Brazil (CCBB) recently with the inception of the Alfred Hitchcock film festival. Their tribute to the Master of Suspense, which began on June 1st and runs through until July 14th, will showcase a retrospective of his work and, much to the delight of film buffs and thrill seekers alike, will include 59 films, 127 television episodes, and 8,954 minutes of suspense.

A portrait of the iconic filmmaker, Alfred Hitchcock, CCBB, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, News
A portrait of the iconic filmmaker, photo courtesy of Jack Mitchell/WikiMedia Creative Commons License.

The one of a kind festival will present the filmmakers complete work spanning a six decade long career. All of Hitchcock’s classics will be featured, including famous titles such as Psycho, The Birds, Vertigo, Rear Window, and North by Northwest. Other screenings will include film shorts, silent films, and television shows.

To commemorate Hitchcock’s career, the CCBB and curator Ardnt Roeskens have organized exclusive events available to the general public. Courses exploring Hitchcock’s work will be taught weekly by an array of professors with topics including everything from the aesthetics of crime to gender roles.

A scheduled debate, featuring a panel of researchers and critics, will be discussing the aesthetics, philosophy and history of Hitchcock’s works. There will also be special screenings of three silent films accompanied by a live pianist, a DJ, and live narration.

As a special offer the CCBB will be introducing a special Hitchcock catalog featuring Hitchcock interviews, photographs, and essays analyzing his works. A complete copy is available for viewing online.

Born in the late 1800’s, the British filmmaker had a modest upbringing. He worked as a draftsman and an advertising director at a cable company before dabbling in writing. He began publishing short stories in his company’s in-house publication and in 1920, landed a full time job as a title card designer in a film studio in London.

A film post for Notorious, a Hitchcock film set in Rio, Brazil, News
A film post for Notorious, a Hitchcock film set in Rio, photo courtesy of WikiMedia Creative Commons License.

Hitchcock helped in title design, art direction, and writing until he got his first big break when a director fell ill and he was asked to complete his film. His career rose from title designer to director and producer in a span of only 5 years, and in the 1940’s he made the move to Hollywood.

Hitchcock’s original filmmaking and style helped cultivate his career in the film industry. He directed more than 50 feature films, with his influential work and techniques shaping the medium.

A pioneer in the filmmaking world, he crafted haunting psychological thrillers and evocative mysteries. Although his films received fifty Oscar nominations in total, including five Best Director nods, Hitchcock himself won none. He died in his sleep in 1980 due to renal failure.

The long awaited CCBB tribute is fitting for Brazil. In 1945 Hitchcock directed and produced a thriller entitled Notorious, starring well known actors Cary Grant, Ingrid Bergman, and Claude Rains. The plot centers around Bergman, an American woman sent to Brazil to infiltrate a gang of Nazis. While awaiting assignment in Rio, Bergman falls in love with Grant, an American government agent, and a whirlwind love triangle ensues

When asked why his films were so popular, Hitchcock declared that, “everybody likes to be scared.” The tribute is sure to cure anyone’s appetite for thrills.

Place: Centro Cultural Banco do Brasil (CCBB), Rua Primeiro de Março, 66 – Centro
Date: June 1st through July 14th
Time: Tuesday through Sunday, from 9AM to 9PM

For information on screenings and events, visit the CCBB Hitchcock site at www.mostrahitchcock.com.br

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