Friday, June 25, 2010

New Chaplin Film

So, just saw a piece in yesterday's paper about how they've found a previously unknown bit of film with Charlie Chaplin, the greatest of all silent movie stars, and probably the greatest of all film comedians. What's more, it may be his first ever appearance in a movie (if not, then the second earliest) wearing the mustache and using the mannerisms of his familiar 'little tramp' character.

Basically, a few months back a film buff bought an old reel at an antique show in Michigan -- a typical Keystone Kops ten-minute short. When he got around to watching it, he was shocked to see someone who looked like Chaplin in a scene. Closer examination reveals it is indeed Charlie C., doing a typical routine. Called A THIEF CATCHER, it was filmed in January 1914 and released the following month. The rediscovered piece debuts at the Slapstick film festival in Rosslyn, Virginia on July 17th; I'll look forward to its eventual release.

Here's the story:

--John R.


Extollager said...

And how about the great Buster Keaton?

John D. Rateliff said...

Keaton IS great, but he's no Chaplin.*
He is to Chaplin as Le Guin is to Tolkien.


*my personal favorites among his works are THE NAVIGATOR and COPS.