Lifeboat presented director Alfred Hitchcock with two very specific technical challenges. One was how to create a 90-minute film when your action was confined to a handful of actors aboard one small boat. The other was how to stage his traditional walk-on appearance when it would be very incongruous to have a portly Englishman in a black suit simply stroll by. The second problem was solved very simply but ingeniously. Hitchcock was featured in an advertisement for a weight-loss pill in a newspaper read by one of the characters. The first problem was a matter of planning the film with storyboards, shot by shot, which the director did better than anyone.