Hitchcock’s 10 Most Desirable Leading Ladies

Last weekend marked the 112th birthday of the great Alfred Hitchcock — as if you had to be told, what with all those birthday parties across the nation. To mark the occasion, we considered profiling several elements of the Hitchcock filmography: his technique, his influence, his cameos. But we ultimately settled, as we so often do, on sex.

Over the course of his 60-some feature films, Hitchcock worked with a dazzling array of beautiful women, most of them fitting what became the archetypal image of the “Hitchcock blonde” — smart, sexy, and sophisticated, yet icy and cool. Theories abound as to how and why this specific type of woman was so often his cinematic object of desire (Donald Spoto’s The Dark Side of Genius offers some of the more intriguing ones), but the man knew what he liked. After the jump, we’ll run down his ten most alluring muses.

10. Doris Day
Josephine Conway McKenna in The Man Who Knew Too Much (1956)

These days, our image of Doris Day is pretty much locked in on the squeaky-clean ingénue of those chaste romantic comedies of the 1960s. But make no mistake: Miss Day was drop-dead gorgeous in Hitch’s 1956 remake of his earlier 1934 effort. She’s playing a wife and mother, in sharp contrast to the sexy singles that the director tended to favor, but it is a memorable and surprisingly accomplished turn.