Spooky Facts You Didn’t Know About Hitchcock’s The Birds

Unquestionably one of the world’s most renowned and influential directors of all time, Alfred Hitchcock is famous for his unique directorial style that earned him his ‘Master of Suspense’ title and paved the way for Hitchcock’s pioneering evolution of the thriller genre. One of his most famous films was of course The Birds, a disturbing tale of a pristine city woman who comes undone in a rustic northern California seaside town by an onslaught of seemingly unexplained, arbitrary and chaotic attacks of birds.

With shots framed to maximise the feeling of suspense and claustrophobia in his audience, this film has become one of the most eerie and terrifying in Hitchcock’s repertoire.

At Arthouse Hotel we are huge Hitchcock fans, which is why we’ve dedicated many of our rooms to the directing legend and one of the most popular is The Birds room.

To celebrate this classic we’ve decided to delve into the spooky facts and secrets that surround the filming of The Birds.

BOOK A STAY IN THE BIRDS ROOM TODAY! 

It was Loosely Based on a Daphne Du Maurier Book 

The title of the film and the plot came from the short story called The Birds written in 1952 by Du Maurier.

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Hitchcock Was Inspired By a Spooky Incident He Saw in the Paper

In 1961, Hitchcock read a newspaper article about hordes of dead birds washing up onto the streets in the seaside California town of Capitola and a story about flocks of frenzied, dying birds flying into the windows of homes in Monterey Bay.

Leading Lady Tippi Hedren Had Never Acted Before

Hitchcock spotted her in a TV commercial for a diet drink during NBC’s Today show. He would eventually groom her into one of his classic icy blondes, choosing her clothes, hairstyle, and even her lipstick for her role as Melanie Daniels.

Hedren Met With Executives About a ‘Secret Film’ on Friday the 13th

She had several meetings with executives and an agent, with no one willing to divulge the director or film for which she was being considered. She was finally told it was Hitchcock and met with the director for dinner; they didn’t discuss the film, but rather food, travel and wine.

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Hitchcock and Tippi Hedren | Source: Wikicommons

The Film is Full of Suspense But There is no Musical Score 

Hitchcock hired his long time musical partner and favourite composer Bernard Herrmann for ‘The Birds,’ but he didn’t write a single piece of music for the film. Instead, Hitchcock wanted him to focus on sounds to make the entire film infinitely creepier by using the chirping and flapping of the birds’ wings just before they attacked.

The Bird Noises Were Made Using Electronic Sound Machines

They were created on the mixtrautonium, an early electronic musical instrument, by Oskar Sala.

The Schoolhouse That Was Used For Filming Was Haunted 

Tippi Hedren said the entire cast was spooked to be there, they had a feeling like it was full of people when it was completely empty. When Hitchcock was told about this, he was even more encouraged to film there.

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Raw Meat and Fish Were Used to Attract The Birds

The actors often had ground meat or anchovies smeared on their hands and raw meat was hung from the cameras.

Not All of The Feathered Friends Were Real

Hammers with fake bird heads were used to peck through the wooden doors and give the effect of birds breaking through.

The Birds Were Fed a Mixture of Wheat and Whiskey

During filming the crew needed to keep the birds standing and flying for hours, so they were fed this combination to keep them going.

 

The Birds Were Not Allowed to be Released or Kept as Pets

Ray Berwick was head bird trainer on set and later admitted that the birds were too dangerous to be released after filming had finished as they had been trained to attack.

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Source: Wikicommons

Live Birds Were Attached to Hedren’s Clothes During Filming

They were attached using long nylon threads so they couldn’t get away. It gave the scene more of a manic feel.

Hedren Really Slaps Doreen Lang who Played Her Hysterical Mother

Hedren was hesitant, having never slapped anyone before, but Lang convinced her to do it.

The Post-Attack Makeup Was Too Horrifying for Hedren

She looked at herself in a mirror and had to go outside to throw up!

The Leading Lady was actually cut in the face by a bird in one of the shots

On the last day of shooting, a bird clawed Hedren’s face just below her eye, and she broke down in tears.

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One Scene Took Seven Days To Shoot 

The intense scene where Hedren’s character is attacked in the attic was filmed over seven long days, even though it only runs about a minute on screen. Hedren has spoken often about how hard the harrowing scene was to film, Hitchcock insisted on having real trained gulls attack her.

Following This Scene Hedren Was Admitted to Hospital for a Week

She said it was the worst week of her life and took a physical and emotional toll on her well-being.

Hitchcock Was Known For Playing Sick Practical Jokes 

Hedren’s daughter Melanie Griffith was given a present by Alfred Hitchcock during the filming, it was an eerily accurate doll of her mother wearing a dress from The Birds and lying in a miniature coffin.

Hitchcock Had A Trick Up His Sleeve For When The Film Was Over

When audiences left the film’s UK premiere at the Odeon in Leicester Square, London, they were greeted by the sound of screeching and flapping birds from loudspeakers hidden in the trees to scare them further.

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The Birds Created an Unending Terror for the Audience 

The film does not finish with the usual “THE END” title because Alfred Hitchcock didn’t want the horror to end once the film was over.

Something Spooky Happened To Daphne Du Maurier’s Son 

In May 2001, Du Maurier’s son reported that he and his wife were being terrorised by seagulls nesting outside their cottage in Cornwall, England.

It Was Voted the Seventh Scariest Film of All Time

In a poll carried out on the British public by Channel 5 and “The Times” in 2006.

The Birds Themed Hotel Room

If you’re a Hitchcock fan, why not book a stay in one of our eight different themed rooms, on a floor that is dedicated to this iconic director.

Sleeping between four and six guests, indulge in the luxury of a bygone era of cinema in our fabulously opulent hotel room dedicated to The Birds.

The Birds room at Arthouse Hotel is dark and decadent, transporting you into the mind of one of the world’s greatest filmmakers with a glorious image from the film, crushed velvet fixtures and luxurious unique features.

Arthouse Hotel is in a perfect location in the heart of Liverpool’s centre and just minutes walk to the vibrant and ever-growing nightlife. There is no better place for group accommodation that the Arthouse Hotel, especially if you love classic movies of the silver screen.

Call us on 0151 601 8801, email info@signatureliving.co.uk or book your room online and stay at Liverpool’s best movie-themed hotel.

What Did the Best High School Movies of All Time Teach Us (If Anything)?

For some, high school (or secondary school as it’s known this side of the pond) is a terrifying prospect but, watching some of the best high school movies of all time can make it seem like a super exciting adventure.

But what, if anything, did these movies actually teach us?

We take a look at the top high school movies of our time, to see if they set us up for disappointment or actually delivered any worthwhile life lessons.

Grease

As we look forward to the prequel of Grease, a short four decades down the line from the first movie premiere, we wonder exactly what did the pupils and teachers of Rydell High teach us?

First, we learn that you can be 28 and still play an eighteen-year-old in American high school movies!

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Olivia Newton-John was closer to thirty than twenty when filming began, but she certainly wasn’t the oldest. In fact, it was the actor that played Rizzo, Stockard Channing, who was 33 when filming began.

Secondly, Grease taught us that high school can change a person. Rather controversially telling us that giving in to peer pressure is the best and most fun way of getting through high school.

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Sandy’s transformation from the wholesome, clean-cut Sandra Dee into a lycra, leather-clad vixen makes us think that good girls never get what they want.

A far cry from the messages we want to instil in the young women of today.

American Pie

A few valuable life lessons came out of this one, but the three most important are;

#1 Never get frisky with fruit pies or any baked good for that matter

#2 Webcams are a bad idea!

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#3 Highschool boys have only one thing on their mind

This high school movie is certainly one that shows us many social traps that the modern student can fall into.

At the end of the day, if we take anything from American Pie, it’s that your friends will always encourage you to do the stupidest things you will ever do in your life.

Mean Girls

An amazing high school movie that helped shape pop culture as we know it, Mean Girls paints a horrifying picture of what high school can be like if you don’t fit in with the “in” crowd.

But what did Mean Girls actually teach us?

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Well, aside from that we certainly get a glimpse of what to expect when it comes to high school hierarchy. Through this, we are shown how easy it is to manipulate those around you, enter three-way phone calls and well-placed candy canes.

But, the most important message that comes out of all those first-year social tortures is that it’s only a year and you have another few years in school to find out where you fit in.

Clueless

A true ode to the 90s, Clueless gave us mere mortals an idea of what it was like to grow up Beverly Hills.

This modern high school movie classic was actually loosely based on Jane Austen’s Emma and shows us that even the best intentions can end with ghastly consequences.

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Cher sees herself as a gifted matchmaker, who only has other’s best intentions at heart, but being forever focused on self-promotion, she loses sight of what real friendship and kindness is.

Clueless makes us understand that, whilst we all would like a friend like Cher, we need to follow our own judgement and not let others choose our paths for us.

The Breakfast Club

One of the greatest lessons ever taught in a high school movie can be learned by watching The Breakfast Club.

Set in day-long detention, a group of five are flung together, all from different social groups. A jock, a geek, a preppy girl, an outcast and a rebel begin to bond and share their experiences both at home and in school.

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The group learn that no matter which group you fit into, or where you came from, your life problems are usually similar.

So far ahead of its time, the message of equality is powerful in The Breakfast Club and certainly shows us what it would be like if we all let go of our prejudice.

High School Musical

A phenomenon that swept the globe back in 2006, High School Musical gave young people everywhere the hope that they could simply sing their way through school.

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The biggest high school movie of the year raked 7.7 million views at its premiere and the soundtrack quickly climbed the charts too.

Thankfully, there was an important message underneath all the white teeth and wholesomeness that encouraged viewers to embrace their dreams and look after their friend’s wishes.

Ferris Bueller’s Day Off

“Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.”

It may not seem like it to many a high school student, but school is only a small portion of life, and believe it or not, probably the best bit.

Although not a great scholastic lesson, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off shows us that sometimes taking a risk will pay off.

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Playing truant by faking illness, Ferris has the time of his life, driving a fancy sports car and becoming a temporary rock star.

The message that this high school movie delivers is to seize the day, an important one that we all forget from time to time.

Never Been Kissed

Proof that life usually doesn’t get much better after high school, Never Been Kissed is a fantastic example of how unimportant social acceptance is in school when it comes to finding happiness and success in later life.

The story of Josie Grossy is heartbreaking and her high school experiences go on to shape and restrict her adult life.

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Despite becoming a success, Josie never gets over how she was treated in high school and when she goes back to school as an undercover reporter, she’s determined not to make the same mistakes again.

Never Been Kissed teaches us that life at the top isn’t always so rosy and in order to get there, you have to sacrifice your morals and integrity.

In short, this high school movie lets us know everything will work out okay in the end, if we are true to who we are.

Carrie

A seriously terrifying high school movie that warns us all of the effects bullying can have, Carrie is a chilling film adaption of Stephen King’s first ever published novel.

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Taking us along on the high school journey of a sheltered young girl, who faces serious issues at home as well as in school, Carrie gives us an understanding of a bully victim’s world and the hardships they face. When poor Carrie falls victim to a bully’s revenge, things take a turn for the worse and the whole town pays.

Carrie might be overkill, literally, but the message is simple, bullies are horrible human beings who always get their just desserts.

Bring It On

On a lighter and much cheerier note, Bring It On is one of those high school movies that helps celebrate the underdog and makes us want to be a cheerleader along the way.

At its heart, Bring It On celebrates honesty, integrity and a determination to do the right thing.

When lead character, Torrance, inherits the captainship of her school’s award-winning cheer squad, she realises her entire cheer-career has been a lie.

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To change it she needs to alter her approach to life and, with the help of LA transfer student Missy, Torrance embarks on a journey of self-discovery and personal improvement.

A real feel-good high school movie, with an amazing soundtrack, Bring It On is certainly one of our favourites.

Superbad

The best and super-baddest of all our high school movies, Superbad teaches us many life lessons. All of which are brought to us through a hilarious and unlikely set of coincidental scenarios.

At the end of the movie we know that cops are people too, you should always look both ways before crossing the road, and good decisions are never made under the influence of alcohol.

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Superbad is one of the greatest high school movies ever made, despite mainly being set outside of school grounds.

At Arthouse Hotel we’re mad about movies and enjoy schooling our audiences about some of the best out there.

So, if you love movies as much as we do, check out some of our fun film facts based on some of our most popular movie-themed hotel suites.

Read all about the Weird and Frightening Facts About the Wizard of Oz or the Unknown and Bizarre Mary Poppins Facts we unearthed. 

Call now and book your stay at Arthouse Hotel on 0151 236 0166 or check out some of our amazing accommodation offers for group and weekend breaks in Liverpool.

How to Have the Best Student Night Out in Liverpool

Student nights in Liverpool are known to be something else! And when it comes to planning the ultimate student night out, at Arthouse Hotel we’ve got you covered.

Student Night Liverpool

Stay at Arthouse Hotel Liverpool

Arthouse Hotel is Liverpool’s go-to destination for a memorable stay in the city. Our movie-themed hotel is the perfect place for staying with your mates and getting ready for a night out in Liverpool in style.

 

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Our picture-perfect rooms are ideal for getting some Insta snaps of your night, so if you’re celebrating a birthday or special occasion, look no further than Arthouse.

 

In one of our themed group rooms

Rooms at Arthouse Hotel are designed to sleep groups of guests for the ultimate group stay. You’re never too old for a sleepover with your best friend, and our rooms are perfect for just that! Our themed rooms range from Marilyn Monroe and the Grease room to Rocky Horror Show.

 

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We always have a wide range of special offers available for you to enjoy, making your visit affordable and convenient. So, don’t miss our latest offers here!

 

Make the most of the whirlpool bath

Our rooms are fitted with fabulous whirlpool baths, so you can enjoy a pamper in between your night out. Our Skyline Suites feature a giant whirlpool bath – ideal for large group stays.

 

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What better spot for relaxing with a glass of fizz before you head out to explore Liverpool’s nightlife scene?

 

Or your very own outdoor terrace

Arthouse Hotel’s Skyline Suites are also home to a scenic outdoor terrace overlooking Liverpool’s skyline. What better backdrop to your stay in the heart of the city?

 

The terrace is fantastic for enjoying the summer months as you make the most of the sun with your best pals.

 

Experience Mulholland Singing Diner

Your student night in Liverpool wouldn’t be complete without some music! Bringing a sprinkle of Broadway magic to Liverpool, head downstairs at Arthouse and you’ll discover Mulholland Singing Diner.

 

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At Mulholland, you can enjoy a bite to eat and delicious milkshakes while our talented team of singing waiters serve your meal in style. What better venue for singing along to your favourite musical hits and ballads through the decades?

 

And enjoy our cocktail deals

Cocktail deals are ideal for a student night in Liverpool. And you can look forward to a fantastic range of cocktails at Mulholland. We offer an unmissable deal of 2 classic cocktails for £10 every day!

With Seel Street’s bars and clubs right on your doorstep, there’s nowhere better to start your night in style.

 

Stop for a drink in a beer garden

Everyone loves a beer garden during the sunny months! And Seel Street is home to plenty to enjoy.

 

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Just across the road from Arthouse Hotel, Alma de Cuba’s beer garden is a firm favourite in Liverpool for sitting back and catching some rays.

 

Spot celebs at historic Alma de Cuba

Alma de Cuba is also the place to be if you fancy spotting some celebs in Liverpool. Love Island star Georgia Steel has been known to frequent Alma, along with Megan McKenna, Charlotte Crosby and some of the best Instagram bloggers in the UK.

 

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The stunning venue will add a touch of sophistication to your night with its historic surroundings. But when it comes to partying, Alma is definitely the place to let your hair down!

 

And don’t miss Alma’s petal drop!

Have the ultimate night out in Liverpool by catching Alma de Cuba’s famous petal drop in action.

 

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The Cuban themed venue will dazzle you with its shimmering samba dancers and fabulous petal drop at the weekend. You won’t forget a night at Alma de Cuba!

 

Cure your hangover with breakfast

Last but not least, curing a hangover is the perfect excuse for an indulgent breakfast. And Mulholland is known for its dreamy stacks of pancakes and tasty breakfast dishes.

 

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What better way to finish your amazing night out in the city? To book your stay with us, a table at Mulholland or at Alma de Cuba, simply get in touch today on 0151 236 1066.

The 7 Most Iconic Rocky Horror Quotes

The Rocky Horror Picture Show might be up there with one of the most quotable musicals ever made. The 1975 musical horror comedy film by 20th Century Fox was a parody tribute to the science fiction and horror ‘B’ movies of the 1930s to 1960s.  The film stars the fantastic Tim Curry, Susan Sarandon and Barry Bostwick amongst other brilliant cast members, who all contribute to creating one of the best kitsch, cult films in cinematic history.

The Start of a Movement

When it was first released, however, the response was pretty dire. Critics’ initial reviews read mostly like Dave Kehr’s from the Chicago Reader, “The wit is too weak to sustain a film, and the songs all sound the same.” Oh, how they were mistaken!

It quickly became a midnight movie where audiences began participating in lip syncs, reciting lines, singing songs and even performing dance routines at the Waverley Theatre in New York in 1976. Soon after, a movement began. Cinemas all over began hosting screenings of Rocky Horror, and to this day the musical masterpiece is the longest-running theatrical release in film history.

So, without further ado, here are the most iconic quotes from this incredible cultural phenomenon that changed the world of film forever!

“I would like, if you may, to take you on a strange journey.” – The Criminologist

The Best Quotes from Rocky Horror

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A healthy dose of foreshadowing if we’ve ever heard it. The Criminologist very quickly transports the audience to a darker, unfamiliar place – and we love it every time!

“Damn it, Janet – I love you!” – Brad

The Best Quotes from Rocky Horror

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It’s from one of the corniest songs in the film, but we think it sums up American Dreamers Brad and Janet perfectly.

“I’m going home.” – Frank N. Furter

The Best Quotes from Rocky Horror

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To explain his outlandish actions, Frank N. Furter tells the cast that he’ll return to Earth one day and stay forever. Whether this is all a pity party or a genuine statement is questionable, but either way, this moment is one of the more memorable and poignant from the film.

“It’s astounding; time is fleeting; madness takes its toll.” – Riff Raff

The Best Quotes from Rocky Horror

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It wouldn’t be a roundup of iconic Rocky Horror quotes without mentioning the Time Warp, would it? Riff Raff’s brilliant beginning to one of the most famous musical numbers is unbeatable.

“So, come up to the lab and see what’s on the slab!” – Frank N. Furter

The Best Quotes from Rocky Horror

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This is one of our favourite lines from the well-known Rocky Horror show tune “Sweet Transvestite.” It’s a hauntingly tantalising invitation from Tim Curry as he really shows us what he’s made of.  If we could all channel a bit of that trademark ‘Furter sass, we reckon we’d all be a lot better off!

“I’ve tasted blood and I want more!” – Janet

The Best Quotes from Rocky Horror

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This is when we see Janet unravel right before our eyes. Frank may have deceived her when he disguised himself as Brad – but she’s not at all bothered when she realises! Frank N. Furter must be one hell of a romancer.

“I see you shiver with antici…pation!” – Frank N. Furter

The Best Quotes from Rocky Horror

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We just had to end this list on a high! Furter has us hook line and sinker with this delivery of the amazing play on words by Richard O’Brien.

“More, More, More!”

The Rocky Horror Room at Arthouse Hotel

If you can’t get enough of Rocky Horror, then you’re in for a treat. Here at the Arthouse Hotel, we have an amazing Rocky Horror-themed room that sleeps up to 6 people. Why not book yourself in when the Rocky Horror comes to the Empire Theatre from the 29th April to 4th May? Arrange a night to remember and let your inner freak-show shine! Make your reservation to stay at The Arthouse Hotel today.