SLAPSTICON 2010 to unveil lost and unknown Chaplin Film

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Richard M Roberts
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SLAPSTICON 2010 to unveil lost and unknown Chaplin Film

Postby Richard M Roberts » Sat Jun 05, 2010 1:57 pm

You heard it here first Folks:

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

SLAPSTICON 2010 TO UNVEIL LOST AND FORMERLY UNKNOWN CHAPLIN FILM

In past years, the International Film Festival Slapsticon has prided itself on recovering and presenting lost comedy treasures, even discovering previously undocumented films featuring the Great Clowns of early cinema, rewriting film history books and filmographies. This year, at SLAPSTICON 2010, motion picture historians will be updating the filmography of the Greatest Comic of All, Charles Chaplin, as SLAPSTICON presents for the first time since it’s original release, Chaplin’s 36th Keystone short subject, a heretofore unknown appearance Chaplin made at Mack Sennett’s legendary Fun Factory in the same year and at the same studio in which he made his film debut.

Chaplin had recalled in his own autobiography that apart from his starring role Keystone Comedies, he had also played bit parts as a Keystone Kop in several pictures. Despite this information, the titles of these works remained elusive for over 90 years and no film prints have surfaced -- until now. SLAPSTICON 2010 proudly presents one of those previously thought lost Keystone comedies, A THIEF CATCHER, released by the Mutual Film Corporation on February 19, 1914. The short stars Ford Sterling, Mack Swain, Edgar Kennedy, and features Chaplin making an extended and very funny cameo as a policeman. The film was shot January 5th through January 26th, 1914, making it perhaps the second or third film Chaplin made at Keystone. The short was released following Chaplin’s third starring Keystone comedy MABELS STRANGE PREDICAMENT. Its importance as an early Chaplin appearance cannot be underestimated, and definitely adds another interesting chapter to Chaplin’s early film career.

The print of A THIEF CATCHER was discovered earlier this year by Film Historian / Preservationist Paul E. Gierucki, current head of restorations for CineMuseum LLC, and one of the"Godfathers" of a group of Comedy Film Historians known as the “Silent Comedy Mafia” who help to organize the yearly Slapsticon festivals.

A THIEF CATCHER will be part of a Chaplin Rarities Program at SLAPSTICON 2010 showing Saturday Evening, July 17th at 8:00 pm at the Spectrum Theater in Rosslyn, Va. Also featured in the Rarities program will be a newly recovered reel of Chaplin Outtakes from his Mutual Comedies, and a sparkling print of Chaplin’s Liberty War Loan propaganda short, THE BOND (1918) featuring outtakes from that film. These remarkable comedies are just a few of the rare treasures that will be screened in the four days of SLAPSTICON 2010, which runs Thursday through Sunday, July 15-18th at the Rosslyn Spectrum Theater in Arlington, VA. For more information, a complete program schedule, registration and hotel information, go to www.slapsticon.org.


RICHARD M ROBERTS

Louie Despres
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Re: SLAPSTICON 2010 to unveil lost and unknown Chaplin Film

Postby Louie Despres » Sat Jun 05, 2010 3:52 pm

I think I just s*%t my pants.

Richard M Roberts
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Re: SLAPSTICON 2010 to unveil lost and unknown Chaplin Film

Postby Richard M Roberts » Sat Jun 05, 2010 4:55 pm

Louie Despres wrote:I think I just s*%t my pants.



Okay Louie,I don't think Slapsticon is causing this problem. Beef up on the fibers `cause I'm not bringing you the Dependz.

RICHARD M ROBERTS

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Re: SLAPSTICON 2010 to unveil lost and unknown Chaplin Film

Postby Louie Despres » Sat Jun 05, 2010 5:03 pm

Richard M Roberts wrote:
Louie Despres wrote:I think I just s*%t my pants.



Okay Louie,I don't think Slapsticon is causing this problem. Beef up on the fibers `cause I'm not bringing you the Dependz.

RICHARD M ROBERTS


Will do! Just pretty gosh-darn excited!

Rob Farr
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Re: SLAPSTICON 2010 to unveil lost and unknown Chaplin Film

Postby Rob Farr » Sat Jun 05, 2010 6:30 pm

I've been scanning CC's Autobiography to see if he says anything about being thrown in with the Keystone Cops. No luck. I half remember a memoir or an interview where he refers to this. Can anyone find the exact quote? I don't have Charlie Chaplin Interviews, but it could be in there. Exciting times!
Rob Farr
"If it's not comedy, I fall asleep" - Harpo Marx

Chris Seguin

Re: SLAPSTICON 2010 to unveil lost and unknown Chaplin Film

Postby Chris Seguin » Sun Jun 06, 2010 6:37 pm

This is huge. HUGE. I can't even begin to express how much I'm dying to see this thing, even if Chaplin's only in it for a minute.
When you think of the amount of press the discovery of the cobbled-together Chaplin film ZEPPED got some six months ago, this is front page news.

Outstanding work, Paul.

Michael J Hayde
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Re: SLAPSTICON 2010 to unveil lost and unknown Chaplin Film

Postby Michael J Hayde » Mon Jun 07, 2010 10:18 am

Rob Farr wrote:I've been scanning CC's Autobiography to see if he says anything about being thrown in with the Keystone Cops. No luck. I half remember a memoir or an interview where he refers to this. Can anyone find the exact quote? I don't have Charlie Chaplin Interviews, but it could be in there. Exciting times!


I've read My Autobiography enough times to know it's not there. I'm reasonably certain this was something he mentioned in an interview during the making of A Countess From Hong Kong.

Michael

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Re: SLAPSTICON 2010 to unveil lost and unknown Chaplin Film

Postby Rob Farr » Mon Jun 07, 2010 12:58 pm

It was mentioned in Peter Haining's British book about Chaplin referencing a 1965 interview. Chaplin's last interview was in 1966 around the time of Countess by Richard Meryman. It appeared in the UK Guardian and US Life in 1967, but he doesn't mention being a Cop.
Rob Farr
"If it's not comedy, I fall asleep" - Harpo Marx

Brent Walker
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Re: SLAPSTICON 2010 to unveil lost and unknown Chaplin Film

Postby Brent Walker » Mon Jun 07, 2010 1:34 pm

Ahh, I'm away all weekend and got home last night to discover that my book is already "outdated." Just kidding (though I wish it could've been discovered 6 months earlier :) ).

Seriously, an unbelievably incredible discovery Paul! The frame grab is tantalizing, and I really look forward to seeing an actual clip or the film itself at Slapsticon! I added some plugs for the film and for Slapsticon on my blog (http://macksennett.blogspot.com) and Facebook pages.

By the way, I'm assuming Chaplin and the cops appears in the finale? Since they were still largely filming chronologically in those days, and filming on A THIEF CATCHER went until January 26th, I'm leaning towards the likelihood Chaplin's scenes were filmed (if in the finale) towards the later stages of that period, after KID AUTO RACES and STRANGE PREDICAMENT but before BETWEEN SHOWERS. I'm still convinced there is a 37th Chaplin Keystone film out there, which would actually be his first released: HOW MOTION PICTURES ARE MADE, the most likely candidate for that mysterious frame of Chaplin with Mabel Normand at the switchboard.

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Re: SLAPSTICON 2010 to unveil lost and unknown Chaplin Film

Postby Michael J Hayde » Mon Jun 07, 2010 2:01 pm

Brent Walker wrote:I'm still convinced there is a 37th Chaplin Keystone film out there, which would actually be his first released: HOW MOTION PICTURES ARE MADE, the most likely candidate for that mysterious frame of Chaplin with Mabel Normand at the switchboard.


There may be a 38th, if you and the other Mafiosi would scroll to the mysterious newspaper ad at the bottom of my blog's plug of this historic find.

http://betterlivingtv.blogspot.com/2010 ... found.html

Michael


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