Geoffrey Shurlock  

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

Geoffrey Shurlock (1884–1976) was an American film censor with the Motion Picture Producers and Distributors of America, the successor of Joseph Breen.

The film Hitchcock shows Geoffrey Shurlock saying with regards to the production of the film Psycho "no American movie has ever found it "necessary" to show a toilet, let alone to flush it."

                         GEOFFREY SHURLOCK[1]
          The Code will absolutely not permit you
          to show a knife penetrating a woman's
          flesh.
                        
                         ALFRED HITCHCOCK
          I assure you, Geoffrey, my murders, are
          always models of taste and discretion.
                        
                         GEOFFREY SHURLOCK
          Is there any improper suggestion of
          nudity in this murder scene in the
          shower?
                        
                         ALFRED HITCHCOCK
          She won't be nude. She'll be wearing a
          shower cap.
                        
         Shurlock makes a note. A man utterly devoid of any sense of
         humor.
  
                         (CONTINUED)
                        CONTINUED:
                        
                        
                         GEOFFREY SHURLOCK
          We might accept a shot from outside the
          bathroom window with Marion in silhouette
          above the shoulders -- provided the glass
          is frosted.
                        
         Hitch greets the suggestion with barely concealed contempt.
         Shurlock turns the page.
                        
          GEOFFREY SHURLOCK
          Then -- this scene with the toilet.
                        
                         ALFRED HITCHCOCK
          It's completely necessary. Marion flushes
          evidence later found by her sister. It's
          a clue to the girl's disappearance.
                        
                         GEOFFREY SHURLOCK
          No American movie has ever found it
          "necessary" to show a toilet, let alone
          to flush it.
                        
         Hitch turns to Peggy and a Paramount Executive.
                        
                         ALFRED HITCHCOCK
          Perhaps we ought to shoot the film in
          France and use a bidet instead?
                        
         No response from Shurlock's end of the room. Peggy stares
         down at the table.
                        
                         GEOFFREY SHURLOCK
          Mr. Hitchcock, if this office denies you
          a seal, and we're certainly heading in
          that direction, your movie will not be
          released in a single theater in this
          country. Will you be making jokes then?
                        
         Hitchcock gives a slow but meaningful shrug.





Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Geoffrey Shurlock" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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