Only an artist as great as Master of Suspense Alfred Hitchcock can get away with a line like "Self-plagiarism is style." Hitchcock's famous words are in reference to his highly stylized and perennially influential brand of macabre cinema—the very brand that turned him into the filmmaking idol of a young Steven Spielberg.
Born in London on Aug. 13, 1899, Hitchcock preceded Spielberg (born Dec. 18, 1946, in Cincinnati, Ohio) by 47 years—a fact that distances the two more significantly than any aspect of their filmmaking legacies. Hitchcock and his two siblings were raised by stern British parents near Jack the Ripper's old stomping grounds on the East End.
Hitchcock enrolled in a few different educational programs before breaking into the world of film. Most notably, he attended the London County Council School of Marine Engineering and Navigation from 1913 to 1914 and studied drawing and design at the University of London in 1916 before going on to write title cards for silent films.