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Up for Auction: Collection of 59 Stills Confirming Existence of Lost Early Hitchcock Film 'The Mountain Eagle'

Photo of Beth Hanna By Beth Hanna | Thompson on Hollywood November 8, 2012 at 1:41PM

Joe Maddalena's Profiles in History will be auctioning a collection of 59 still photographs of two of Alfred Hitchcock's last silent films, "The Mountain Eagle" and "The Manxman." The collection provides irrefutable proof that "The Mountain Eagle" existed -- it has long been one of the most searched-for films in history, and until now...
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Hitchcock, front, and wife Alma Reville, right, onset during "The Mountain Eagle"
Hitchcock, front, and wife Alma Reville, right, onset during "The Mountain Eagle"

Joe Maddalena's Profiles in History will be auctioning a collection of 59 still photographs of two of Alfred Hitchcock's last silent films, "The Mountain Eagle" and "The Manxman." The collection provides irrefutable proof that "The Mountain Eagle" existed -- it has long been one of the most searched-for films in history, and until now no documentation of the film had been discovered. 

One review in 1926 claimed "The Mountain Eagle" was "far superior to 'The Lodger,'" which is often considered Hitchcock's finest silent film. The photos up for bid are no publicity stills; these are custom-printed in oversized formats, intended exclusively for Hitch's personal archives in the 1920s. 

The auction will take place December 15 & 16 in Los Angeles.

For L.A. dwellers interested in Hitchcock's silent work, on November 29 the Academy unveils the director's sixth film, "The Ring," a melodrama set in the world of boxing that is Hitchcock's one and only original screenplay. The screening is part of the "Hitchcock 9," the BFI archival project to restore 35mm prints of nine early works.

The photo above of Hitchcock and wife Alma Reville, on the set of "The Mountain Eagle," makes an appearance in Sacha Gervasi's "Hitchcock," which recently premiered at AFI Fest.

This article is related to: News, Hitchcock, BFI, Academy Of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences


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Thompson on Hollywood

Born and raised in Manhattan, Anne Thompson grew up going to the Thalia and The New Yorker and wound up at grad Cinema Studies at NYU. She worked at United Artists and Film Comment before heading west as that magazine's west coast editor. She wrote for the LA Weekly, Sight and Sound, Empire, The New York Times and Entertainment Weekly before serving as West Coast Editor of Premiere. She wrote for The Washington Post, The London Observer, Wired, More, and Vanity Fair, and did staff stints at The Hollywood Reporter and Variety. She eventually took her blog Thompson on Hollywood to Indiewire. She taught film criticism at USC Critical Studies, and continues to host the fall semester of “Sneak Previews” for UCLA Extension.