J.J. Abrams Plays My Favorite Scene: 'It's the Best Work Either of Them Ever Did'
Here's a very special edition of Movieline's game for cinephiles, "My Favorite Scene." Usually we ask our subjects (like Zach Gilford) simply to name their favorite film scene of all-time, and a reason why. With Lost creator and illustrious film producer J.J. Abrams, though, we learned a bit more than usual. Join us as the Super 8 writer/director names his favorite scene, his favorite set, and the woman whose death almost inspired him to write a play about his childhood.
Turns out Abrams is not only an Alfred Hitchcock fan, but a devotee of the film's two stars, James Stewart and Grace Kelly.
"I will say the very first moment in Rear Window when you see Grace Kelly as she comes in and kisses Jimmy Stewart. That's insane to me. It's the best work either of them ever did."
"And when she unveils the dinner from 21? There's nothing about that movie that isn't my favorite. When we shot the Mission Impossibles and Star Trek on the same stage they shot Rear Window, I felt the ghosts of everyone involved."
After I brought up Rear Window's classic costumer Edith Head (a frequent Hitchcock collaborator), Abrams divulged his longstanding emotional connection to her work.
"I remember the day Edith Head died," he said. "She could always claim to make someone fat look thin, or someone tall look short. I remember being a kid in the back of my mom's car hearing she died, and I always thought, 'Oh my God, I'm such a fat kid. I need Edith Head to make me look thin.' Then she died. I remember thinking, 'I have to write a play one day called The Day Edith Head Died,' which I haven't done. But Edith Head was just the best."
Note to Mr. Abrams: I'd see that play!