Classic Movie Legend Tribute: Anthony Perkins

 

Happy Birthday to Classic Movie Legend, Anthony Perkins, born April 4th, 1932!

Anthony Perkins’ acting career has fascinated me. Sure, there are a lot of actors who are either typecast or who only have a single memorable role, but with Perkins, it’s different.  I mean, it’s one thing to be typecasted because you fit the type; Eric Blore often played a butler for a reason. But it’s entirely different when you create a character so memorable, people can’t see you as anything else. What Perkins did was play a role so well, and so well crafted, that he created – not simply a character – but cultural icon.

He created a character so unique, so complex and so subversively menacing that Norman Bates has become a point of reference in American culture. Sure, Perkins was still able to make it as working actor after Psycho, but the phantom of Norman Bates was to follow him in every room he held auditions.  When I think about it, it amazes me. Perkins did such superb job in Psycho that it literally shaped how the public would view him for the rest of his life and ensured that Bates would live on far after his death. And although Perkins spent almost 50 years in the business and has over 60 acting credits to his name, he will only be truly remembered for one: Norman Bates.

Anthony Perkins with Janet Leigh in Psycho (1960, Alfred Hitchock)

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Anthony Perkins with Alfred Hitchcock on the set of Psycho (1960, Alfred Hitchock)

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Anthony Perkins‘ most famous face, Norman Bates, in Psycho (1960, Alfred Hitchock)

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Minoo Allen for Classic Movie Hub

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