Tuesday, February 12, 2019
Charlie and Stanley - At The Beginning
With the recent release of "Stan and Ollie" - an excellent film starring John C. Reilly and Steve Coogan - I wanted to see what Stanley (Jefferson, at the time) had said about Chaplin. They were both in Fred Karno's company when they arrived from England to tour the United States beginning in 1910.
Here's what Stanley said: "We had a lot of fun in those days. Charlie and I roomed together and I can still see him playing the violin or cello to cover the noise of the cooking of bacon I was doing on the gas ring, forbidden of course. Then we'd both take towels and try and blow the smoke out of the window."
Charlie, of course, was hired by Mack Sennett in 1914 and went on to worldwide stardom. Stanley, who shortly thereafter changed his name to Stan Laurel, also achieved a world-wide audience, with Oliver "Babe" Hardy, though never one that equalled Chaplin.
Here are two pictures of Charlie Chaplin and Stan Laurel when they were traveling the U.S. with the Fred Karno company.