The first connection I made between the book and the movie was “Oh! Their names are the same!” It seemed kind of dumb at first, but I doubted it was a coincidence. Hitchcock’s Johnny is a male reporter sent to Europe to find out if war is brewing and accidentally stumbles on a conspiracy plot. The plot was a lot more thrilling and mysterious than the book Foreign Correspondent, although I imagine the female Johnny would have been inspired by this movie – there is no direct reference to the movie, but I think female Johnny wanted to be like Hitchcock’s Johnny, being sent on an important mission to glean information from some enigma (For him, Ambassador Van Meer. for her, cage fighter Scooter). Female Johnny wants to stumble upon some big secret, get her big break as she’s been trying to do for the past couple years, and make a name for herself (or use her fake one, as Hitchcock’s Johnny was given one, although he didn’t like it as much).
Both Johnny’s targets are distant and difficult to connect with. Van Meer seems almost stupid and whimsical in his conversations with “Haverstock”, then he’s killed/kidnapped. Scooter actively avoids many of female Johnny’s (or Ute’s, her professional name), writing brief and mostly impersonal responses to Johnny’s long and worshipful letters. While the novel Foreign Correspondent is not nearly as exciting plot-wise as Hitchcock’s movie, the main characters’ goals are almost identical. But it seems that trouble can only be found when one is not looking for it, as “Haverstock” only found out about the conspiracy because he got a little too curious, while female Johnny is trying her damnedest to get something juicy but only getting stonewalled wherever she goes. It’s like she’s trying to live a fantasy, but only in her head, since her attempts in real life only yield terse answers.