His New Job

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His New Job
His New Job.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed byCharlie Chaplin
Written byCharlie Chaplin
Louella Parsons[1]
Produced byJess Robbins
StarringCharles Chaplin
Ben Turpin
Charlotte Mineau
Leo White
Robert Bolder
Charles J. Stine
Arthur W. Bates
Jess Robbins
Edited byBret Hampton
Charlie Chaplin
Distributed byEssanay Studios
Release date
  • February 1, 1915 (1915-02-01)
Running time
32 minutes
CountryUnited States
LanguagesSilent
English intertitles
His New Job

His New Job is a 1915 American short silent comedy film written by, directed by, and starring Charlie Chaplin.[2] Gloria Swanson appears as an uncredited extra.[2] The title is an inside reference to this being Chaplin's first film after leaving Keystone Studios for Essanay Studios. It was also the only film Chaplin shot at Essanay's Chicago studio. He found the facilities and climate (His New Job was shot in mid-winter) not to his liking, and Chaplin soon relocated back to California.

Synopsis[edit]

Charlie sits in an audition queue for Lodestone Motion Picture Co. The girl next to him is interviewed first and gets a contract immediately. A strange looking man enters and jumps the queue for the next interview. A further man enters and they fight over who is next.

Charlie twice walks onto set while they are filming. The director sends him to work with the carpenter. In the props store he becomes obsessed by a classical female statue.

When one of the actors playing a Prussian officer in full uniform is fired, Charlie is asked to replace the actor. Charlie dons a somewhat less elegant uniform and is on his way to the set when he is distracted by the carpenter playing dice. They start gambling.

When he finally gets to act, he ruins his scene, accidentally destroys the set, and uses the skirt of the star of the movie to wipe his face.

Notes[edit]

The movie's title, His New Job, had a subtle second meaning, as it was Chaplin's first film for Essanay after his contract with Keystone Studios expired at the end of 1914. The use of the name "Lockstone" for the silent film studio was an obvious humorous jab by Chaplin directed at Keystone.

The movie was filmed at Essanay's Chicago studio in the dead of winter in January 1915. Chaplin found the city's frigid weather so objectionable that he quickly relocated his operations to balmy southern California.

This was the first Chaplin film to be photographed by Rollie Totheroh who began a remarkable 40-year working association with Chaplin.

A young Gloria Swanson—she was not quite 16 years old—appears in the background as a stenographer.[citation needed] She received no screen credit for this part.

Cast[edit]

Review[edit]

A reviewer for the motion picture trade publication Biograph glowingly wrote, "There is probably no film comedian in the world more popular with the average picture theater audience than that famous fun-maker Charles Chaplin, whose services have recently been secured by the Essanay Company. The art of Charles Chaplin defies analysis and disarms the critic. Just why he is so funny, it is almost impossible to say, and very probably he could not tell you himself. He possesses a naturally comic personality and its humor is accentuated by the originality of the innumerable bits of 'business,' with which his work is so profoundly interspersed. Scarcely a moment passes while he is on the screen, but he is up to some wild piece of mischief or committing some ludicrous folly."[citation needed]

Preservation status[edit]

A print of the film is preserved at the George Eastman House and is now in the public domain.[2]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Kelley, Michelle. "Profile: Louella Parsons and Harriet Parsons". columbia.edu. Women Film Pioneer Project. Retrieved 2 March 2016.
  2. ^ a b c "Progressive Silent Film List: His New Job". Silent Era. Retrieved 2009-07-03.

External links[edit]