Edna Purviance's bio

Currently working on Edna Purviance's family biography. Draft is done. Photo: Leading Ladies © used by ednapurviance.org

Monday, May 29, 2006

Charlie Chaplin & Mann Chinese Theatre

Update Link: Just saw this in USA Today about the Face Lift starting to happen in Hollywood. I like places that have character, so I hope the luxury condos and high end shops don't totally take over. Most American towns have too much of that already.

While I was in Hollywood, I spent sometime at the Mann Chinese Theatre. This is the theatre Sid Grauman started as 'Grauman's Chinese Theatre' and in 1928 premiered Charlie Chaplin's film 'The Circus'.

Sid first met Chaplin in San Francisco. Sid and his father owned 'The Empress Theatre', when Chaplin was performing with Karno during his America Tour. Sid was a huge fan of Chaplin's and became a longtime friend.


A tradition started at the Grauman's Chinese of stars placing their hand and feet in cement and signing it. Many stars of Chaplin's era are there, but not Chaplin's. Sadly, it was removed because people defaced it because of a few people believing Charlie was communist. (checkout this BBC link for Geraldine's words on Chaplin)


Now the story is that Chaplin's original cement piece is no longer in Hollywood, but the Jim Henson Studio, who owns Chaplin's studio, plan to have a copy placed in Chaplin's old studio.

Here is the Brief Glimpse of one of Sid's 'The Circus' ad...

1 comment:

Paul Carpenter said...

Chaplin himself may have inspired Grauman to begin the cement tradition - when he built his studio in 1918, Chaplin impressed his trademark splayed-out footprints into the concrete sidewalk leading to his stage. He also signed his name and date near the stage - vintage photos can be seen at: http://oak.cats.ohiou.edu/~stein/page8.html. The Chaplin Studio was only a few blocks from Grauman's theater, and Sid certainly visited often. Chaplin's signed cement marker was also removed from his studio, by Red Skelton, who bought the studio in the 1950's. It is reported to be at Skelton's former Palm Springs home. Some of Chaplin's footprints are still visible at the studio.