Early Charlie Chaplin: The Artist as Apprentice at Keystone Studios

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Early Charlie Chaplin: The Artist as Apprentice at Keystone Studios

Format:  Hardcover,

237 pages

Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Pub Inc

Publish Date: Dec 2011

ISBN-13: 9780810882423

ISBN-10: 0810882426

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The following content was provided by the publisher.
Charlie Chaplin produced some of the greatest films of all time, including The Gold Rush, The Circus, City Lights, Modern Times, and The Great Dictator. Before making a name for himself as an undisputed master of cinema, however, Chaplin first developed his acting, writing, and directing skills at Keystone Studios. Mack Sennett, who attended one of Chaplin s music hall shows, thought the entertainer would be a good fit at his newly established studio, where they specialized in the roughhouse slapstick Chaplin performed on stage. Intrigued with the idea of preserving comedy on film, Chaplin began work for Sennett in 1913. While some of the first efforts were crudely filmed, they allowed Chaplin to understand the rudiments of performing for the camera. As he became more interested in directing his own films, Chaplin learned techniques that set his work apart from other comedies. The films Chaplin made at Keystone were the catalyst for a significant motion picture career, and a character that he would create and develop at the studio would become among the most iconic images in the history of entertainment. In Early Charlie Chaplin: The Artist as Apprentice at Keystone Studios, James Neibaur examines each of these films, assessing the important early work of a comedian who became a timeless icon. From his debut as a fast talking con man in Making a Living to his role in the six-reel Marie Dressler vehicle, Tillie s Punctured Romance, Chaplin displays many of the characteristics that would endear him to audiences around the world. The majority of these films have been made available on DVD, allowing the reader to appreciate the background behind these works. Early Charlie Chaplin is a must, not only for fans of silent cinema and Chaplin, but for anyone who appreciates film history.


Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Pub Inc
Publish Date: Dec 2011
ISBN-13: 9780810882423
ISBN-10: 0810882426
Format: Hardcover
Number of Pages: 237
Shipping Weight (in pounds): 1.1
Product in Inches (L x W x H): 6.0 x 0.9 x 9.0

Chapter outline

Acknowledgmentsp. vii
Introductionp. ix
Charlie Chaplin's Early Yearsp. 1
Mack Sennett and the Keystone Studiosp. 4
Chaplin's Keystone Filmsp. 10
Making a Livingp. 12
Kid Auto Races at Venice, Cal.p. 18
Mabel's Strange Predicamentp. 21
A Thief Catcherp. 25
Between Showersp. 28
A Film Johnniep. 33
Tango Tanglesp. 37
His Favorite Pastimep. 41
Cruel Cruel Lovep. 45
The Star Boarderp. 51
Mabel at the Wheelp. 55
Twenty Minutes of Lovep. 62
Caught in a Cabaretp. 67
Caught in the Rainp. 75
A Busy Dayp. 81
The Fatal Malletp. 85
Her Friend the Banditp. 88
The Knockoutp. 90
Mabel's Busy Dayp. 94
Mabel's Married Lifep. 99
Laughing Gasp. 105
The Property Manp. 112
The Face on the Bar Room Floorp. 119
Recreationp. 124
The Masqueraderp. 126
His New Professionp. 132
The Roundersp. 138
The New Janitorp. 144
Those Love Pangsp. 151
Dough and Dynamitep. 155
Gentlemen of Nervep. 165
His Musical Careerp. 174
His Trysting Placesp. 181
Getting Acquaintedp. 188
His Prehistoric Pastp. 193
Tillie's Punctured Romancep. 198
Chaplin after Keystonep. 209
Supporting Players in Chaplin Keystone Comediesp. 217
Chaplin's Post-Keystone Filmsp. 225
Bibliographyp. 229
Indexp. 233
About the Authorp. 237


Review by Library Journal (2012-02-15)

Silent film historian Neibaur (The Fall of Buster Keaton) examines Charlie Chaplin's first 36 screen appearances in short films over a one-year period at Keystone Studios. Detailed background information about each production and critical analysis of the content is provided. The result is a text that functions better as a reference source than as a narrative. Neibaur characterizes Chaplin's time at Keystone as a period of rapid development for the perfectionist screen actor and director and examines how the concept of the movie star emerged. Ted Okuda and David Maska's 2005 Charlie Chaplin at Keystone and Essanay covers similar ground, but a 2010 British Film Institute restoration of Chaplin's Keystone films has altered the body of work being studied, making this a necessary update.

Verdict: Less a biographical account than a study of the films in question, this is nonetheless the most complete look at this period of Chaplin's career. For cinema scholars and silent film fans.

-Jeremy Heilman, New York

(c) Copyright 2012. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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