Last month, Fox Searchlight announced its plans to shift the release date of “Hitchcock,” the story behind a charming little movie called “Psycho,” from next April to this November, plopping it smack in the middle of the 2012 Oscar season.
Today, the trailer arrived online and made the studio’s motivation to switch that date pretty apparent. As Hitchock’s wife, Alma Reville, Helen Mirren looks to be playing a role right in her sharp-tongued wheelhouse. Scarlett Johansson, as Janet Leigh, gets to go for broke by reenacting the shooting of that ultra-famous shower scene.
And then there’s Anthony Hopkins, who turns on the well-known sloooow cadence of the filmmaker (not to mention some padding around his middle and facial prosthetics) to portray the master of suspense.
In other words, at least one or two of these actors could have a shot at an Oscar nod come January. (Mirren, it would seem, has the best chance since the supporting actress field is not nearly as crowded as lead actor.) The movie also looks like it could be a lot of fun for anyone who loves Hitchcock, which, as I understand it, is pretty much everyone who cares about movies.
My concerns about “Hitchcock” at this point are, firstly, that “Hitchcock” and “The Girl” — the HBO movie about the making of “The Birds” that stars Toby Jones in the Hitch role and debuts later this month — will collide in the pop cultural zeitgeist and cancel out each other’s relevancy. And secondly: Hopkins’s make-up. Something about the way he looks in the trailer makes him resemble an older, heavier Billy Crystal. But maybe this is just me.
Watch the “Hitchcock” trailer below and see whether you think Hopkins, Johansson and Mirren are convincing enough to become potential Oscar contenders. The trailer for “The Girl” is embedded below, in case you want to get a jump-start on the inevitable conversation about whether Jones or Hopkins makes a better Hitchcock.