Marnie is a 1964 psychological thriller produced and directed by Alfred Hitchcock. The screenplay by Jay Presson Allen was based on the 1961 novel of the same name by Winston Graham. The film stars Tippi Hedren and Sean Connery.
One year after she appeared as Melanie Daniels in Alfred Hitchcock’s thriller, The Birds, actress Tippi Hedren took on another Hitchcock role in this unusual psychological drama. Marnie Edgars (Hedren) is a scheming young woman who repeatedly finds employment as a secretary and then proceeds to rob her employers.
Though she changes her disguise, her new boss Mark Rutland (Sean Connery) recognizes her. Mark proves to be a bit unusual himself. Instead of reporting her to the police, he is intrigued by her criminal behavior–as well as her bizarre aversion to touch. He slowly discovers the events in Marnie’s past that have caused her antisocial behavior.
Alfred Hitchcock originally wanted Grace Kelly to make her screen comeback in the title role, but the people of Monaco were not happy with the idea of their princess playing a compulsive thief. After Grace Kelly turned him down, Hitchcock considered and then rejected these actresses for the title role of “Marnie”: Eva Marie Saint, Lee Remick, Vera Miles, Claire Griswold, and Susan Hampshire. Paul Newman was offered the role of Mark Rutland, but wasn’t interested. He did star in Hitchcock’s ‘s next film Torn Curtain (1966).
In a 1960 article called “Why I Am Afraid of the Dark”, Hitchcock noted “…it’s because I liked Edgar Allan Poe’s stories so much that I began to make suspense films.”
Hitchcock put Edgar Allan Poe references throughout this film. Marnie’s last name is Edgar. (In the novel, Marnie’s last name is Elmer.) Like Poe’s characters, Marnie Edgar is subject to psychological terror. The film takes place in New York (Strutt’s office), Virginia (Garrod’s Stables) and Philadelphia (Rutland Publishing and Wickwind). These are the three places that Edgar Allan Poe lived throughout the better part of his life. The film’s climactic scene takes place at Marnie’s mother’s home in Baltimore, the city where Poe died under mysterious circumstances in 1849.
Admission, parking and popcorn are free.