100 years ago today - Alf Reeves manager of the Fred Karno Tour received a telegram that would change the course of the cinema and create the first global superstar.
May 12th 1913
Alf Reeves Manager
Karno London Comedians
Nixon Theatre, Philadelphia
Is there a man named Chaffin in your company or something like that if so will he communicate with Kessel and Baumann 14 Longacre Broadway New York
In Charlie’s autobiography he thought they must be lawyers, and he was left a fortune by a great aunt in New York. Instead they asked him if he would consider signing up with Keystone Company.
I find this disturbing, times change not people, was and is all about the almighty dollar.
This was during the worst flu pandemic in history - called “Spanish Flu” (killing an est 40 million) and the theater owner is thanking Charlie because people against the advice of the health department were risking their lives to come and see “Shoulder Arms”
Released October 1918
These cartoons were in all of the movie theaters during World War I or what is was called then “The Great War”.
February 5th 1919 - The day United Artists was founded by
Charlie Chaplin, Mary Pickford, Douglas Fairbanks & D.W. Griffith.
38 years ago today March 4th 1975 Charlie Chaplin was finally Knighted and became Sir Charles Chaplin K.B.E.
I feel this was a long time coming, I am sure he was thrilled and something he longed to happen for many years, I just think it is sad it came at such a late stage in his life he was 86, he should have been Knighted so many years before this.I
Imagine a boy living an impoverished life in Victorian England dreaming that one day he would become a Knight, as a boy he use to dream of being in Parliment.
He is with some of his family, wife Oona (who became Lady Oona Chaplin) daughters Geraldine, Josephine, Jane, Annette (Annie) and son Christopher, a man out of camera range may be Josephine’s husband.
Many may not be aware of this strange but oh so true story discovered March 2nd 1978 - 35 years ago
Charlie Chaplin led a long full and sometimes tumultuous life, this would continue after his death at the age of 88 - Christmas Day 1977.
1911 (22) years old) and the day he was Knighted with his loving wife Oona by his side - 1975 (86 years old):
According to the BBC, on March 2, 1978, his coffin was unearthed from its location near the Chaplin home in Switzerland and stolen. The casket was missing for 11 weeks until it was finally recovered—unopened—on May 17 in a cornfield 10 miles from the grave yard.
During this time, the Chaplin family received multiple ransom demands for the return of Charlie’s body. However, Charlie’s widow, Lady Oona Chaplin, refused to submit to the robbers’ demands, arguing that “Charlie would have thought it ridiculous.” Charlie had once told her if he was kidnapped (albeit I’m sure he meant alive) not to give in to them.
Charlie Chaplin with his honorary Academy Award, 1972
Welcome back Charlie, he accepted this on April 10th 1972 less than a week from his 83rd birithday, if anyone has not seen the 5 minuture clip on You Tube that shows him receiving this Honorary Oscar please do, he is so overwhelmed by the reception he received..really touching.
What many may not know is that the following year 1973 - he did in fact receive another Oscar, that was for best Original Score for his film “LIMELIGHT”, the song being “Eternally” aka Terry’s Theme.
Your first reaction may be “wait didn’t that film come out in 1952?”, it did in fact get released in 1952 but because of the accusations of him being a Communist and the atmosphere of hate that was causing - “Limelight” was only shown in Los Angeles for a few days, to be considered for an Oscar a film must be shown in Los Angeles for at least 2 weeks -
Well in 1972 when he was coming back to America there was a great revival of his films and mass merchandising, during that time “Limelight” was shown in Los Angeles for more than 2 weeks, therefore it became eligible - needless to say after someone winning an Oscar for a film that was 20 years old they changed the rules.
94 years ago today February 5, 1919
Charlie Chaplin, Douglas Fairbanks, Mary Pickford & D.W. Griffith signed contracts to form their new company United Artists (UA)
I think the selection of their company’s name was brilliant, they were artists that were in danger of being left out of how they wanted to make their films and how much they could earn, the big studios were threatening to combine leaving them little choice but to join them. By doing it this way they kept their independence.
This iconic image documents the closing scene in Charlie Chaplin’s Modern Times, shot at Sierra Hwy & Penman Rd., Santa Clarita, California.- in 1936.
1) - 1936
This is from the Montreal Gazette - December 27th 1977
This is one of the photos I need to see on my dash board every one in awhile, this photo is all over the internet.
This is one of the most beautiful photos I have seen of Charlie Chaplin
Touches my heart how the amazing Helen Keller who is deaf and blind is able to communicate with Charlie, fingers on his lips and thumb on his throat to feel the vibrations.
Charlies face looks like he is mesmerized by her.
I read about her when I was 12 years old and what a fascinating story deaf and blind at the age of 18 months from scarlet fever and with the help of her teacher Annie Sullivan learned to communicate, able to accomplish so much in her life, she even received a college degree …an inspirational woman.
This is on the set of Sunnyside in 1919.