HOLLYWOOD- Sir Edwin Fluffer once again delves into his personal memoirs – soon to be published as ‘Not THAT Kind of Fluffer!!!’ – to recall the man they called the laughing arse: Charlie Chaplin.
Hollywood’s historians will always gleefully tell those tales of the silent stars whose careers didn’t survive the arrival of sound, or ‘the talkies’ as we called them. But few will ever remember those giants of the black and white movies whose days on the big screen came to an end with the invention of color.
I was one of the lucky ones: the dinner jacket I always wore while filming actually looked very smart in colour, but not everyone was as fortunate.
Dear Buster Keaton, for example, was absolutely hilarious in black and white, but in color his slapstick and general tomfoolery just didn’t come across. I personally think that audiences were distracted by his bright blue skin. The studio didn’t know what to do with him and after he turned down a lead role in The Smurfs he was never seen again.
It was a similar story with Charlie Chaplin.
In black and white he had the audience holding their sides with laughter, but in color his green skin just didn’t work. He read for both The Incredible Hulk and Kermit The Frog, but sadly lost out to slightly more emerald actors. I believe that in later years he moved to Japan and enjoyed a lucrative career as Godzilla.
But that’s another story…
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