The Great Dictator • 19m
Charlie Chaplin long wanted to make a film about Napoleon Bonaparte, working and reworking his concept over a number of years—until ultimately it morphed into THE GREAT DICTATOR. The following visual essay by Cecilia Cenciarelli, archivist and head of the Cineteca di Bologna’s Progetto Chaplin, traces the trajectory of Chaplin’s Napoleon project.
Up Next in The Great Dictator
The Clown Turns Prophet
In this visual essay, Charlie Chaplin biographer Jeffrey Vance draws from film stills and historical imagery to discuss the making of THE GREAT DICTATOR, the anticipation surrounding Chaplin’s first all-talkie production, and the enduring influence of his bold satire.
Sydney Chaplin’s Footage from THE GRE...
While Charlie Chaplin was directing and acting in THE GREAT DICTATOR, his half-brother, Sydney, was on set documenting the production in full color. His silent footage, shot on 16 mm Kodachrome film, is presented here in its entirety.
King, Queen, Joker
In 1921, Charlie Chaplin’s half-brother, Sydney, directed and played the leading roles in KING, QUEEN, JOKER. In 1999, Chaplin historian Frank Scheide found the only elements of the film known to exist at the British Film Institute. The film’s use of a single actor in two roles and barbershop set...