LOS ANGELES (AP) _ The mother of all slasher films, ``Psycho,'' topped the American Film Institute list of 100 most thrilling movies, with ``Jaws'' and ``The Exorcist'' coming in second and third.
``Psycho'' director Alfred Hitchcock and ``Jaws'' director Steven Spielberg combined for 15 films on the list released Tuesday.
Hitchcock placed nine movies on the list, with two others in the top 10 _ ``North by Northwest'' at No. 4 and ``The Birds'' at No. 7. Spielberg had six films, including ``Raiders of the Lost Ark'' at No. 10.
The rest of the top 10 were: No. 5, ``The Silence of the Lambs''; No. 6, ``Alien''; No. 8, ``The French Connection''; and No. 9, ``Rosemary's Baby.''
The rankings were announced in a special aired Tuesday night on CBS. The institute began issuing an annual list on different movie themes three years ago, with a roster of the top 100 American films.
The latest list was chosen by about 1,800 directors, actors, studio executives, critics and others in Hollywood, who voted from a field of 400 nominated movies.
Considering that 16 Hitchcock films were nominated, there was little doubt he would fare well. And it's small surprise that ``Psycho'' led the way, considering that even co-star Janet Leigh was so affected by her death scene in the shower that she only takes baths to this day.
''`Psycho' scared the hell out of me when I saw it finished. Making it and seeing it are two different things,'' Leigh said. ``That staccato music and the knife flashing. You'd swear it's going into the body. I still don't take showers, and that's the truth.''
The 1960 Hitchcock classic starred Anthony Perkins as mild-mannered Norman Bates, a nutcase who donned his dead mother's clothes to kill Leigh's character, a guest at the Bates Motel.
Linda Blair, who scored an Oscar nomination as the demonically possessed girl in ``The Exorcist,'' said she still hears from fans who were so terrified by the movie that they recall exactly when, where and with whom they saw it.
``If you do one project in your lifetime that people remember like that, that's a terrific thing to have been a part of,'' Blair said.
While the list was heavy on horror, mystery and murder, it also included suspenseful dramas. ``The Godfather'' ranked 11th, ``The Great Escape'' was 19th, ``Lawrence of Arabia'' was 23rd and ``Casablanca'' was 37th.
The list featured Westerns such as ``High Noon'' (No. 20) and ``Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid'' (No. 54), the boxing flick ``Rocky'' (No. 52) and even ``The Wizard of Oz'' (No. 43).
``It cuts across drama and disaster and epic and horror and music and noir and sci-fi and sports and Westerns,'' said Jean Picker Firstenburg, the institute's director. ``Each of these genres can affect you with the same emotional response, which is that your heart races.''
The oldest film was ``Safety Last'' (No. 97), the 1923 silent classic that features Harold Lloyd's dazzling stunts on a high-rise building. The newest films were from 1999, ``The Sixth Sense'' (No. 60) and ``The Matrix'' (No. 66).
Stanley Kubrick had five films on the list, including ``A Clockwork Orange'' (No. 21) and ``The Shining'' (No. 29).
Harrison Ford, host of the CBS special, tied with Claude Rains for best-represented actor, with four films each. Ford's were ``Raiders of the Lost Ark,'' ``Star Wars'' (No. 27), ``The Fugitive'' (No. 33) and ``Blade Runner'' (No. 74); Rains' were ``Lawrence of Arabia,'' ``Casablanca,'' Hitchcock's ``Notorious'' (No. 38) and ``The Adventures of Robin Hood'' (No. 100).
Technically, Hitchcock himself was the on-screen presence with the most films on the list. He made cameos in eight of his ranked films, while in ``Dial M for Murder'' he appeared in a photograph on a wall.
Eva Marie Saint, co-star of ``North by Northwest,'' said Hitchcock had a talent rare among today's filmmakers: creating suspense subtly, without car crashes, explosions and high body counts.
Saint recalled her fright on first seeing ``The Birds,'' which includes a quiet yet terrifying scene in which birds slowly gather behind the film's star, Tippi Hedren, in prelude to an attack.
``I remember walking with my husband in Santa Barbara, and a couple of blackbirds came up,'' Saint said. ``We kept walking, and about six more flew up and landed. Then maybe six more came, and I found myself saying to my husband, `Remember that scene? Let's just walk away slowly. Don't run, just walk.'
``When a film scares you that much, it stays with you.''