Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Richard Attenborough|
|Produced by||Richard Attenborough
|Screenplay by||William Boyd
|Story by||Diana Hawkins|
|Based on||My Autobiography
by Charles Chaplin
Chaplin: His Life and Art
by David Robinson
|Starring||Robert Downey, Jr.
Penelope Ann Miller
|Music by||John Barry|
|Edited by||Anne V. Coates|
|Distributed by||TriStar Pictures|
Chaplin is a 1992 British-American biographical comedy-drama film about the life of British comedian Charlie Chaplin. It was produced and directed by Richard Attenborough and stars Robert Downey, Jr., Marisa Tomei, Dan Aykroyd, Penelope Ann Miller, and Kevin Kline. It also features Geraldine Chaplin in the role of her own paternal grandmother, Hannah Chaplin.
The film was adapted by William Boyd, Bryan Forbes and William Goldman from the books My Autobiography by Chaplin and Chaplin: His Life and Art by film critic David Robinson. Associate producer Diana Hawkins got a story credit. The original music score was composed by John Barry.
The film is structured around lengthy flashbacks as the elderly Charlie Chaplin (Robert Downey Jr.) (now living in Switzerland) recollects moments from his life during a conversation with fictional character George Hayden (Anthony Hopkins), the editor of his autobiography. Chaplin's recollections begin with his childhood of extreme poverty, from which he escapes by immersing himself in the world of the London music halls, after which he relocates to the United States.
There are references to some of his many romantic episodes (including Hetty Kelly, Mildred Harris, Georgia Hale, Marion Davies, Edna Purviance, Lita Grey, Paulette Goddard, Joan Barry and Oona O'Neill), his professional collaboration with Mack Sennett and friendship with Douglas Fairbanks, and the US Federal Bureau of Investigation (led by J. Edgar Hoover) accusing him of communist sympathies and forcing him to leave the United States.
- Robert Downey, Jr., as Charlie Chaplin
- Marisa Tomei as Mabel Normand
- Geraldine Chaplin as Hannah Chaplin, Charlie's mother
- Paul Rhys as Sydney Chaplin, Charlie's half-brother
- John Thaw as Fred Karno, British music-hall impresario
- Moira Kelly as Hetty Kelly, Charlie's first love / Oona O'Neill, Charlie's final wife
- Anthony Hopkins as George Hayden, Charlie's biography editor
- Dan Aykroyd as Mack Sennett, an early Hollywood film producer
- Penelope Ann Miller as Edna Purviance, a young Hollywood actress
- Kevin Kline as Douglas Fairbanks, a leading man in early Hollywood movies
- Matthew Cottle as Stan Laurel, a Hollywood comedian
- Maria Pitillo as Mary Pickford, a leading lady in early Hollywood movies
- Milla Jovovich as Mildred Harris, a young Hollywood actress and Charlie's first wife
- Kevin Dunn as J. Edgar Hoover, head of the US Federal Bureau of Investigation
- Deborah Moore as Lita Grey, a young Hollywood actress and Charlie's second wife
- Diane Lane as Paulette Goddard, a young Hollywood actress and Charlie's third wife
- Nancy Travis as Joan Barry, a young Hollywood actress
- James Woods as Joseph Scott, a California attorney
- David Duchovny as Roland Totheroh, Chaplin's long time cameraman
The film received mixed to positive reviews. Although the film was criticized for taking dramatic licence with some aspects of Chaplin's life, Downey's performance as Chaplin won universal acclaim. Attenborough was sufficiently confident in Downey's performance to include historical footage of Chaplin himself at the end of the film.
The film was lauded for its high production values, but many critics dismissed it as an overly glossy biopic. One critic wrote that the screenplay "endeavors to cover too much ground. The life of Charlie Chaplin was so vast and varied that a film is far too restrictive a format to give it justice." Chaplin currently holds a 57% rating on Rotten Tomatoes based on 47 reviews.
|Academy Awards||Best Actor||Robert Downey, Jr.||Nominated|
|Best Original Score||John Barry||Nominated|
|Best Art Direction||Stuart Craig
Chris A. Butler
|BAFTA Awards||Best Actor||Robert Downey, Jr.||Won|
|Best Costume Design||John Mollo
|Best Makeup and Hair||Wally Schneiderman
John Caglione, Jr.
|Best Production Design||Stuart Craig||Nominated|
|Golden Globe Awards||Best Original Score||John Barry||Nominated|
|Best Actor – Drama||Robert Downey, Jr.||Nominated|
|Best Supporting Actress||Geraldine Chaplin||Nominated|
|Moscow International Film Festival||Golden St. George||Richard Attenborough||Nominated|
The soundtrack to Chaplin was released on December 15, 1992.
|1.||"Chaplin - Main Theme"||John Barry||3:06|
|2.||"Early Days in London"||John Barry||4:18|
|3.||"Charlie Proposes"||John Barry||3:01|
|4.||"To California / The Cutting Room"||John Barry||3:45|
|5.||"Discovering the Tramp / The Wedding Chase"||John Barry||4:01|
|6.||"Chaplin's Studio Opening"||John Barry||1:58|
|7.||"Salt Lake City Episode"||John Barry||2:11|
|8.||"The Roll Dance"||John Barry||2:34|
|9.||"News of Hetty's Death / Smile"||John Barry||3:42|
|10.||"From London to L.A."||John Barry||3:21|
|11.||"Joan Barry Trouble / Oona Arrives"||John Barry||2:15|
|12.||"Remembering Hetty"||John Barry||2:57|
|14.||"The Roll Dance"||John Barry||1:47|
|15.||"Chaplin - Main Theme / Smile"||John Barry||4:46|
|16.||"Smile (Performed by Robert Downey, Jr.)"||John Barry||3:38|
The film was released on VHS in 1993 and later on DVD in 1997. A fifteenth-anniversary edition was released by Lions Gate Entertainment (who obtained the distribution rights to the film in the interim under license from the copyright holder, StudioCanal) in 2008. The anniversary edition contained extensive interviews with the producers, and included several minutes of home-movie footage shot on Chaplin's yacht. The box for this DVD mistakenly lists the film's running time as 135 minutes (it is 143 minutes, the same as the original theater release).
The 15th Anniversary Edition was later released on Blu-ray in February 15, 2011.
- "Chaplin (1992) : Film". DigiGuide.
Dismissed on its release by many critics as a typically fluffy paean to Chaplin ... this sumptuous biopic may have a touch too much gloss, but it's anything but bland.
- "Chaplin (1992)". Hometheaterinfo.com. Retrieved 2010-09-07.
- "18th Moscow International Film Festival (1993)". MIFF. Retrieved 2013-03-10.
- Chaplin Soundtrack TheOST. Retrieved Dec. 30, 2013
- "Combustible Celluloid film review - Chaplin (1992), Richard Attenborough, Robert Downey Jr., Moira Kelly, dvd review". Combustiblecelluloid.com. 2008-10-08. Retrieved 2010-09-07.
- Chaplin at the Internet Movie Database
- Chaplin at the TCM Movie Database
- Chaplin at AllMovie
- Chaplin at Box Office Mojo
- Chaplin at Rotten Tomatoes