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Chaplin's Vintage Year: The History of the Mutual-Chaplin Specials

BearManor Media has released Michael J. Hayde’s new book CHAPLIN’S VINTAGE YEAR, available on Amazon.

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When Charles Chaplin signed a record-setting contract with the Mutual Film Corporation in February 1916, it was the culmination of events that changed the motion picture business. Mutual’s founders redefined how films were bought, sold and distributed. Chaplin redefined screen comedy with a character that leapt into the hearts of moviegoers around the world. Together they established the value of star power and created twelves magnificent comedies that have endured for generations. From the nickelodeon to the internet, the MUTUAL-CHAPLIN SPECIALS have been viewed by more people than any other films in the entire history of cinema.

CHAPLIN’S VINTAGE YEAR tells the full story of the MUTUAL-CHAPLIN SPECIALS, framed within the rise and fall of the Mutual Film Corporation, the worldwide phenomenon known as “Chaplinitis,” the famous $670,000 contract, and the various acquisitions and releases these comedies have enjoyed for nearly one hundred years. The book includes a detailed filmography featuring period reviews and exhibitor comments, and is lavishly illustrated with over 150 photographs and advertising images.

Natural History Museum, L.A.

One of Charlie Chaplin’s original Tramp costumes is part of the “Becoming Los Angeles” exhibition at the Natural History Museum in Los Angeles. Chaplin himself donated this costume to the NHM. The exhibition explores L.A.’s Native Americans, colonists, and settlers; rancheros, citrus growers and oil barons; captains of industry, boosters, and radicals; filmmakers, innovators, and more!

Portrait Charlot

For more information, visit the Natural History Museum website.

Symposium: Art for the Citizen

September 25, 26, 27, and 29 - Crystal Bridges Museum, Bentonville, AR

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Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in Bentonville, Arkansas presents a symposium on Art for the Citizen— bringing together creative thinkers from surrounding institutions to explore artists from the first half of the twentieth century whose work conveys political and social messages—from paintings to the cinema of Charlie Chaplin. The final day of the symposium features a live performance accompanying Charlie Chaplin’s City Lights, presented by the Arkansas Philharmonic Orchestra playing Chaplin’s own score.

For full program details, visit the Crystal Bridges website.

Criterion to release City Lights

Criterion is releasing Chaplin’s City Lights on DVD/Blu-ray on November 12, 2013.

Pre-order yours today!

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Disc Features

-New digital restoration from a 4K film transfer, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray

-New audio commentary by Charlie Chaplin biographer Jeffrey Vance

-Chaplin Today: “City Lights,” a 2003 documentary on the film, featuring Aardman Animations cofounder Peter Lord

-Chaplin Studios: Creative Freedom by Design, a new interview program featuring visual effects expert Craig Barron

-Archival footage from the production of City Lights, including film from the set, with audio commentary by Chaplin historian Hooman Mehran; a costume test; a rehearsal; and a complete scene not used in the film

-Excerpt from Chaplin’s short film The Champion (1915), along with footage of the director with boxing stars at Chaplin Studios in 1918


-One Blu-ray and one DVD, with all content available in both formats

-PLUS: A booklet featuring an essay by critic Gary Giddins and a 1966 interview with Chaplin

Pre-order today!