Saturday, May 12, 2012

An Interesting Fact - Charlie Chaplin look-alike contest -

American around 1915, Charlie Chaplin look-alike contests became a popular form of entertainment. (Actually, the competitions were really contests to see who could imitate the "tramp" character popularized by Chaplin, as few people would have recognized Chaplin himself without his familiar costume, moustache, and makeup.) A rising young actor/comedian named Bob Hope took first prize in one such contest in Cleveland.

Legend has it that Chaplin himself once entered — and lost — one of these competitions. It is usually said the contest was held in Monte Carlo or Switzerland, and that he came in second or third. (Some versions claim that Chaplin's brother Syd was judged the winner.) Chaplin did indeed fare poorly in a Chaplin look-alike contest, but the competition took place in a San Francisco theater. His final standing is not recorded, although it was noted that he "failed even to make the finals." Chaplin told a reporter at this time that he was "tempted to give lessons in the Chaplin walk, out of pity as well as in the desire to see the thing done correctly."

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