The Biography of Charlie Chaplin

Name: Charlie Chaplin
Birthday: April 16, 1889
Birthplace: London, UK
Date of death: December 25, 1977 (88 years old)
Height: 165 cm
Zodiac sign: Aries
Career: British actor



Charles Chaplin (1889-1977) was an English actor, dancer, director and producer. Also known as "Carlitos". He was the most famous film artist of the silent film era. He was notable for his mimes and comedies of the slapstick genre. The character that most marked his career was "The Tramp", a poor hiker with the refined manners and dignity of a gentleman, dressed in a frayed coat, worn pants and shoes that are wider than his number, one bowler hat, a cane and his striking mustache.


Charles Spencer Chaplin Jr. was born in London, England, on April 16, 1889. His father Charles Spencer Chaplin, was a vocalist and actor, and his mother Hannah Chaplin, was a singer and actress. His parents split up before Charles turns three. In 1894, at the age of five, Chaplin took the stage and sang the song "Jack Jones". His father was an alcoholic and had little contact with his son. He died of liver cirrhosis in 1901. His mother was admitted to an asylum and Chaplin was taken to an orphanage and later transferred to a school for poor children.

Charles Chaplin's First Success Film

In 1908, at the age of 19, Charles Chaplin began to work in the variety theater, becoming successful as a mimic. In 1910, on a tour in the United States with Fred Karmo's troupe, he was seen by a film producer and, in 1913, he was debuting as a film actor for the Keystone Film Company.

In late 1914, Chaplin was hired by Essanay, earning a high salary and his own production unit. In 1915, he produced the comedy “The Tramp” when he created his famous character - "the tramp Carlitos" - a wanderer, poor man, with refined manners and the dignity of a gentleman, dressed in a frayed coat, pants and shoes worn and wider than his number, a bowler hat, a cane and his striking mustache. The humble and gallant character became the central figure in several Chaplin films.

Charlie Chaplin's personal life

Despite this, in the 1940s, Chaplin was surrounded by many contradictions and scandals, especially concerning his personal life and political convictions.

Hetty Kelly - dancer, Chaplin's first love. They met in London when Chaplin was 19 years old and Hetty 14. After five dates, they broke up. Hetty Kelly later married, Chaplin only talked a few times with her brother. Hetty Kelly died in 1918 during the Spaniard pandemic. Chaplin learned about this only in 1921.

Hetty Kelly

Edna Purvians and Chaplin met in 1915 in Los Angeles during the filming of Chaplin's second film for Esseney Studios. Edna Purviance maintained a romantic relationship with Chaplin during their joint work at Essanay and Mutual Films Studios in 1916-1918. In 1918, Edna began dating actor Tommy Meigan of Paramount. Edna remained the main actress in Chaplin's films until 1923. Chaplin paid her a weekly salary until her death in 1958.

Edna Purvians

Mildred Harris (1901-1944) - Chaplin's first wife . The wedding took place on October 23, 1918. Chaplin was 29 years old, Harris - 16. Chaplin married Harris because of her pregnancy. Later, the pregnancy was false. July 7, 1919 their son was born - Norman Spencer Chaplin. The child lived only three days.

Mildred Harris

In 1920, during the editing of the film "Baby", the divorce procedure began. Harris's lawyers tried to arrest the film. Chaplin was forced to export about 140,000 meters of film (more than 2,000 takes) to another state. The film was edited in a hotel room in Salt Lake City.

The divorce was accompanied by recriminations. Chaplin later wrote in an autobiography about this marriage: "Mildred was not evil, but she was hopelessly zoological. I could never get to her soul - she was clogged with her with some pink rags and all sorts of nonsense."

Lita Gray (1908-1995) - Chaplin's second wife . The wedding took place on November 26, 1924, at that time Lita was only 16 years old. In this regard, in order to avoid problems with the legislation of the United States of America, Chaplin married Lita Gray outside the United States - in Mexico. She starred in the films "Gold Rush", "Idle Class", "Kid".

Lita Gray

They had two sons: Charles Chaplin (Jr.) (1925-1968) and Sidney Earl Chaplin (1926-2009). Divorced in 1928 during the filming of the film "Circus". Chaplin paid Lita $ 825,000 (according to other sources - $ 700,000) - a record amount for that time, which led to an investigation by the tax authorities. Chaplin’s biographer Joyce Milton wrote that the relationship between Chaplin and Lita Gray became the basis of Nabokov ’s novel “Lolita”.

Actress Polett Goddard (1910-1990) and Chaplin were in close relationship from 1932 to 1940. Most of this time, Paulette lived in Chaplin's house. She starred in the films "New Times" and "The Great Dictator." After breaking up in 1940, they said they secretly married in 1936.

Polett Goddard

At the end of her life, Paulette also moved to Switzerland. Her husband was the writer Erich Maria Remarque .

Una O'Neill (May 13, 1925 - September 27, 1991) is the daughter of Eugene O'Neill. Fourth wife of Chaplin . She was 36 years younger than him. They met when Chaplin was looking for an actress for the film adaptation of the play "Ghost and Reality." The film was not shot. Una said she does not want an acting career, but wants to devote herself to the family. The wedding took place on June 16, 1943 during the process of recognizing the paternity of the child Joan Berry. After the marriage with Chaplin, Una's father stopped all contact with her.

Una O'Neill

In 1952, Chaplin, before leaving the United States, issued Una a power of attorney to manage his bank account. After Chaplin was blocked from entering the United States, Una removed Chaplin's property from the United States. She later renounced US citizenship. O'Neill and Chaplin had three sons (Christopher, Eugene and Michael) and five daughters (Geraldine, Josephine, Joan, Victoria, Anna-Emil). Una gave birth to her last child when the great comedian was 72 years old.


Charlie Chaplin boasts that he mastered almost all the professions of the film industry. He was a director, screenwriter, producer, composer, and lead star of many pioneering silent film era films and established himself as one of the greatest writers in history. Without him, the movie would be completely different. Chaplin was not only one of the fathers of cinema, but also his first real star.

Despite the scandals and political persecutions surrounding him all his life, as well as forced emigration and exile, Chaplin was and remains a legend of Hollywood and all American cinema. Even after 100 years since the beginning of his film career, and 40 years after his death, Charlie Chaplin was given the star glory of an influential filmmaker, who still inspires us with his creativity and ideas.

Charlie Chaplin's Honorary Award: 1972 Oscars

Filmography Charlie Chaplin

Feature Films of Charlie Chaplin

1914 - Tillie's Punctured Romance interrupted novel; actor; first full-length comedy in history; 1921 - The Kid; producer, director, screenwriter, actor, editor)
1923 - A Woman of Paris; producer, director, screenwriter, actor (cameo), editor)
1925 - Gold Rush (The Gold Rush; producer, director, screenwriter, actor, editor)
1926 - Woman by the sea (A Woman of the Sea; producer)
1928 - Circus (The Circus; producer, director , screenwriter, actor, editor)
1928 - People of Art (Show People; cameo)
1931 - City Lights (City Lights; producer, director, screenwriter, actor, editor, composer)
1936 - Modern Times (producer, producer, director, screenwriter, actor, composer)
1940 - The Great Dictator (The Great Dictator; producer, director, screenwriter, actor, composer) 1947 - Monsieur Verdoux; producer, director, screenwriter, actor, composer
1952 - Ramp lights (Limelight; producer, director, screenwriter, actor, composer)
1957 - The King in New York (A King in New York; producer, director, screenwriter, actor, composer)
1967 - Countess from Hong Kong (A Countess From Hong Kong; producer, director, screenwriter, actor (cameo) , composer)

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