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Variety, New York, February 6, 1914.

Mabel‘s Strange Predicament Title & Scenes


      Comedian Tells How Chaplin Was Inspired To Wear

      Big Shoes and Small Hat

      CHESTER CONKLIN, who is to be seen this week

in McFadden‘s Flats at the Mark Strand, the

other day was sitting in an automobile waiting to be called

for a scene of Rubber Heels, then being filmed

opposite the Astoria studio. (...)

      Mr. Conklin acted one year with Charlie Chaplin, and

Conklin says that Mack Sennett thought he had

been „stung“ when he engaged Chaplin at $175 a week.

      ,That was in the days before artificial lights,‘

said Mr. Conklin, ,and therefore we relied upon the sun

and worked in the open all the time. Chaplin‘s

chief work was in portraying a drunk, and he appeared

as a drunk in one scene of a picture, then went

to another set where he did his stunt, and then to another

for about the same thing. A picture called Mabel‘s

Strange Predicament really started Chaplin going. Before

that it was thought that all he had to do was to stagger,

jump, run and get his feet tangled up in something. He had

portrayed a comic English newspaper reporter

with a long mustache, and he was terrible. In Mabel‘s Strange Predicament the principal players were Mabel

Normand, Roscoe Arbuckle, Chaplin, Ford Sterling and

myself. Sterling was the pattern for all comedy.

He wore huge shoes.

      ,During a lull in the activities, while Arbuckle and I were

playing pinochle, Charlie got the idea of using

his world-renowned costume. I wore baggy trousers and

Arbuckle had a small derby hat, and then there

was Sterling with his enormous shoes. Charlie, to amuse

himself and perhaps other folk, put on my trousers,

Arbuckle‘s hat and Sterling‘s footwear. Then he picked

up a piece of black crêpe and held it under

his nose like a small, thick mustache. He looked so ridiculous

that he impressed Sennett as having possibilities.

They fixed the mustache on and Charlie played in this make-up.

And the first thing we knew was that he had stolen

the picture from all of us.‘“

(...) New York Times, Feb. 6, 1927

& My London correspondent tells me that the top-hole comic

films in Britain today are without any doubt, Keystones,

handled in London by the Western Import Company, Ltd. There

is a Keystone in almost every „first run“ program

in London every week and most weeks it is the best enjoyed

item on the bill. The Britisher wants to laugh with

vigor when he goes to the theatre. Some very fine productions

of the problem order leave him cold and he is apt

to yawn at the three reels of sentimentality in which some

European manufacturers specialize. But a good

rousing comedy, or more strictly speaking, a „Comic“ – is exactly

to his taste. „Refined comedy“ he likes, farce with

a knockabout element he absolutely revels in. He has a keen

eye for the grotesque, loves to see types he knows

caricatured and is not above finding amusement in a good fall

or a collision. Hence the popularity of Keystones,

which contain all these elements and the Britisher can appreciate

the latter even when roaring at the former.

(...) Reel Life, Feb 21, 1914

Mabel‘s Strange Predicament, com., Key“

Editorial content. „RELEASED NEXT WEEK

      (Feb. 9 to Feb. 16, inc.)

      Manufacturers Indicated By Abbreviations, Viz.: (...)

      MUTUAL (...)

      Keystone................Key (...)

      Feb. 9 – Monday.

      Mutual  –“ (...)

      „Mabel‘s Strange Predicament, com., Key.“

Redaktioneller Inhalt

      In diesem, seinem ersten Auftritt als Tramp kreuzt

Chaplin als Betrunkener auf, der in der Hotelhalle telefonieren will

und feststellt, dass er kein Geld bei sich hat. Dann tritt Mabel

mit einem Hund an der Leine in die Hotelhalle.

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