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McGuffin Name Study

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Location: [unknown]
Surname/tag: McGuffin
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How to Join

Please contact the project leader Mark McGuffin or leave a comment at the foot of the page. If you have any questions, just ask. Thanks!

Goals

This is a One Name Study to collect together in one place everything about one surname and the variants of that name. The hope is that other researchers like you will join our study to help make it a valuable reference point for people studying lines that cross or intersect.

Task List

I always thought a MacGuffin was (to cite Webster’s) “an object, event, or character in a film or story that serves to set and keep the plot in motion despite usually lacking intrinsic importance.” Surely this would be a good place to collect such examples And to record that the first instance of the name used in this way (Alfred Hitchcock) after whom it was so named and why. Examples: A. In “Psycho” Hitchcock's gimmicky device, termed a MacGuffin (the thing or device that motivates the characters, or propels the plot and action), is the stolen $40,000 from the realtor's office. Marion Crane becomes a secondary MacGuffin after her murder. B. The Pink panther C. The Maltese Falcon D. The 39 Steps, the MacGuffin is the plan for an advanced airplane engine; E. In The Lady Vanishes, the MacGuffin is a coded message contained in a piece of music. F. A MacGuffin can be a secret instigator for the characters, but the audience does not necessarily need to care about it. In his film North by Northwest, spies chase an ad executive who they believe is harboring secret government documents. It is never revealed to the ad exec (played by Carey Grant) or to the audience what the secret documents are. G. The 39 Steps, the MacGuffin is the plan for an advanced airplane engine; in The Lady Vanishes, his 1938 mystery thriller, the MacGuffin is a coded message contained in a piece of music. H. A MacGuffin can be a secret instigator for the characters, but the audience does not necessarily need to care about it. In his film North by Northwest, spies chase an ad executive who they believe is harboring secret government documents. It is never revealed to the ad exec (played by Carey Grant) or to the audience what the secret documents are. I. The 39 Steps, the MacGuffin is the plan for an advanced airplane engine; in The Lady Vanishes, his 1938 mystery thriller, the MacGuffin is a coded message contained in a piece of music. J. A MacGuffin can be a secret instigator for the characters, but the audience does not necessarily need to care about it. In his film North by Northwest, spies chase an ad executive who they believe is harboring secret government documents. It is never revealed to the ad exec (played by Carey Grant) or to the audience what the secret documents are. K. In Pulp fiction the MacGuffin is the contents of a brief case. Arbuthnot-53 06:18, 23 November 2019 (UTC)Arbuthnot-53





Memories: 1
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My Great, great, great grandfather John McGuffin came to the Americas from Armagh Ireland around 1810 as a 9 year old boy who was running away from home. His mother was about to spank him for stealing candy and he ran out the door and jumped on a ship just leaving the dock, never to return. I have followed him through his life but have never been able to find his parents, brothers, sisters etc. This is a call to all McGuffin's out there to join this project.
posted 6 Apr 2020 by Mark McGuffin   [thank Mark]
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McGuffin Surname Project!

Would you like to help research the McGuffin families?

posted by Mark McGuffin
Researching the McGuffin surname from Ireland. My line dead ends with my Great,Great Great Grandfather John McGuffin who left Armagh Ireland as a 9 yr old boy approx. 1808.
posted by Mark McGuffin
edited by Mark McGuffin