Neither Hitchcock nor Powell received enthusiastic support for their projects from the studios. Hitchcock resented this lack of faith and, motivated to prove Paramount wrong, utilized his reputation as Hitchcock, the entertainer and showman, to shape both the popular and critical response to Psycho in ways impossible for Hitchcock, the artist, to do.
While Powells similar bitterness certainly contributed to his creation of a complex, fully realized work of art, disguised as a low brow horror flick, Powell, as pure artist, had no other weapons with which to fight. Unfortunately, while Hitchcocks other identity as master marketeer helped turn Psycho into a box office phenomenon, Powells high art aspirations simply angered the critics intelligent enough to appreciate his artistry.
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