Clint Eastwood is a major name in Hollywood. The prolific actor, director, and producer is behind some of the most iconic films of all time. However, few know that the Gran Torino star nearly had a spot in an Alfred Hitchcock film production.
Alfred Hitchcock is one of the most celebrated filmmakers in Hollywood history. Dubbed the Master of Suspense, Hitchcock found unprecedented success starting in the 1940s. From Psycho to The Birds, Vertigo, Rear Window, or Notorious, Hitchcock’s films have long found their way into pop culture, even today.
Hitchcock is also known for landing some Hollywood royalty A-listers to star in his films. Stars such as Cary Grant; Grace Kelly; Ingrid Bergman; and Sean Connery, among others. And, there was almost another movie added to Hitchcock’s prolific resume. A film that would also add a big name to his list of stars, Clint Eastwood.
Clint Eastwood Has A Sit-Down With Directing Legend, Alfred Hitchcock
In the 1970s, a meeting was arranged between Eastwood and Alfred Hitchcock to discuss a collaboration idea. However, the pitch that Hitchcock gave Eastwood didn’t thrill the actor. And, he eventually turned down the project, noting that he wasn’t fond of the script. Furthermore, this project remains unknown; as it never came to fruition after all with Universal Pictures scrapping the film early on in the planning stages.
Clint Eastwood Recalls His Lunch Meeting With the Film Icon
“Hitchcock wanted me to be in one of his films,” Clint Eastwood recalls of the lunch meeting.
“I wasn’t nuts about the script,” the Dirty Harry star continues.
“I had lunch with him in his office. When I walked in, he was sitting there very erect and he didn’t even move,” Eastwood relates.
“Only his eyes did. They followed you across the room,” the actor adds. “He had the same thing for lunch every day — a steak and some sliced tomatoes.”
Was This Unknown Film An Unmade Universal Pictures Production?
Over the years, Clint Eastwood has never described this undeveloped movie pitch that was discussed in the meeting. However, rumor has it that the film Eastwood turned down was one titled The Short Night. This film is one that Alfred Hitchcock was attached to at the time. A Universal Pictures production, The Short Night was slated to be an espionage romance production, featuring a spy named Gavin Brand.
As many of us would guess, it’s very likely – if this was the film Eastwood discussed with Hitchcock – Eastwood would have portrayed the main character. In addition to considering Eastwood for the project, Walter Matthau, Sean Connery, and Steve McQueen were considered as well. However, Universal opted against following through with the film.