Herbert Coleman

Active - 1934 - 1969  |   Born - Jan 1, 1908   |   Died - Oct 3, 2001   |   Genres - Western, Thriller, Mystery, Comedy, Drama

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Biography by Jason Buchanan

As master-of-suspense Alfred Hitchcock's first assistant director and associate producer, William "Herbert" Coleman helped the cinematic visionary bring some of his most noted efforts to vibrant life. Later helming his own independent features in the 1970s, Coleman would again serve Hitchcock in the 1990s as he oversaw the restoration of the Hitchcock classics Vertigo and Rear Window.

Born in Bluefield, WV, and beginning his career as a truck driver for Paramount Studios in 1925, he soon found work as an assistant director under John Farrow (California [1946] and Copper Canyon [1950]) and William Wyler (Roman Holiday [1953]). Beginning his relationship with Hitchcock as an assistant director in Rear Window in 1954 and serving as an associate producer from The Trouble With Harry (1955) through North By Northwest (1959), Coleman would later return to work with his old friend in 1969's Topaz as well as producing both Alfred Hitchcock Presents and The Alfred Hitchcock Hour. Also directing Audie Murphy in both Possie From Hell and The Battle at Bloody Beach (both 1961), Coleman was a longtime member of the Directors Guild of America, the Producers Guild of America, and the Writers Guild of America. Penning an autobiography entitled The Hollywood I Knew: 1925-1983, Coleman recounted his days with Hitchcock and his trials in Hollywood.

On October 3, 2001, Coleman died of natural causes at Faithful Care Home in Salinas, CA. He was 93.

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