Showing posts with label George Bernard Shaw. Show all posts
Showing posts with label George Bernard Shaw. Show all posts

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

New footage

I came across these video clips on Getty Images recently. Although Charlie appears for only a few seconds in both, the footage was unfamiliar to me.

This first clip is from a luncheon for George Bernard Shaw in 1933.  You can see Charlie walking behind Marion Davies smoking a cigarette.

This clip is from the funeral for Will Rogers in 1935. Charlie appears around :44. Mary Pickford can be seen about ten seconds later.

Friday, February 26, 2016

Day By Day: 1936

Wednesday, February 26th: The Coolidge arrives in Honolulu; Chaplin lunches with George Bernard Shaw. 

According to ship manifests for the SS Coolidge, only one day was spent in Honolulu before the ship (including the Chaplin party) continued on to Yokohama. This was Chaplin's second visit to Hawaii. He vacationed here with Edna Purviance in 1917.

CC waves from the ship. Valet Frank Yonemori is on his left.
Between Charlie and Paulette is her mother (& chaperone), Alta Goddard.
The couple are welcomed by Hawaiian swimmer, Duke Kahanamoku.

At 12:30 that afternoon, Chaplin had arranged to meet George Bernard Shaw for lunch at Lau Yee Chai, a Chinese restaurant in Waikiki. Shaw had arrived at Honolulu a couple of days earlier aboard the SS Arandora Star. They had arranged to meet at the Royal Hawaiian Hotel and then go to the cafe together. Shaw arrived at the hotel by car. Not finding Chaplin waiting for him, he walked up and down the floor impatiently. Finally, he hailed a taxi and left word that he would meet Chaplin at the cafe. Unbeknownst to Shaw, Chaplin had been at the hotel all along. He had been strolling with Paulette and her mother in the hotel garden when Shaw arrived.

Here's the rest of the story from the San Bernardino Sun:
Charlie eventually strolled out of the hotel, his white hair crisply unruffled, and entirely at ease. After inquiring his way to the cafe, he leisurely made his way there, and sat down with Shaw without offering any apology for his tardiness. 
"Where's your family?" inquired Shaw, referring to Paulette Goddard and her mother, accompanying Chaplin on a South Pacific cruise.
"Oh, they decided to visit the beach," Chaplin answered.
After the luncheon Chaplin left to join Miss Goddard on the beach. 1
Reporters who later talked to Shaw agreed that his usual cold-steel wit and sarcasm had come off second best against Charlie's nonchalant treatment. ...

Earlier today the English and American funnymen met aboard the steamer Arandora Star in Honolulu harbor, where Chaplin arrived today on the President Coolidge
Shaw was going through his daily exercises. Chaplin, passing by, waved at him and shouted greetings. Then he said to those about him: 
"Isn't he cute?"
The venerable wit interrupted his "daily dozen" to wave cordially back at Chaplin. 2
Chaplin and Shaw in Honolulu.

Stay tuned for more in my Day By Day: 1936 series.


1They must have spent time with Duke Kahanamoku since a photo exists of the three in a boat on Waikiki Beach. 
2San Bernardino Sun, Feb. 28, 1936

Other sources:
Ship manifests for SS President Coolidge via
"Second Visit of GBS To Hawaii" by Edwin North McClellan, 1954

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Luncheon for Irish playwright George Bernard Shaw at the MGM studio restaurant, March 1933

Shaw flew to Hollywood from the Hearst Ranch in San Simeon, where he and his wife had been guests for several days. He was shown around the MGM lot by Marion Davies, who acted as host, visiting the sets of When Ladies Meet and Dinner At Eight (Chaplin accompanying them). Others present at the lunch were Louis B. Mayer, Clark Gable, William Randolph Hearst, John Barrymore, Harry Crocker, and Una Merkel. Chaplin & Shaw spent much of the meal discussing Japanese theater. The two first met in 1931 during Chaplin's world tour.

L-R: CC, Shaw, Davies, Louis B. Mayer, & Clark Gable
CC, Davies, and Shaw

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

World Tour (1931-32) Revisited: London premiere of City Lights at the Dominion Theater, Feb. 27th, 1931

Charlie's guests were George Bernard Shaw and Lord & Lady Astor (Ralph Barton is facing Charlie on the left.)
 When the film was over, Shaw said, "The little fellow is a genius whom none of us has properly appreciated."

Dominion Theater program
Charlie takes a bow following the premiere.  He told the audience:
"It would be silly to say how much I feel all this emotion. This has been a wonderful triumph for me,
coming home to my own country like this. Some day, perhaps, when I have a few more gray hairs
I may sit down quietly and write it all down in a book about my life."

After the screening, Charlie held a party at the Ritz-Carlton. Winston Churchill was among the guests.  He danced with several ladies but he was most intrigued by a dancer named Sari Maritza, who, along with her friend, Vivian Gaye, had attended the premiere as guests of Charlie's press agent, Carlyle Robinson. She became his constant companion until he left for Berlin two weeks later. 

Winston Churchill at the City Lights premiere party.
City Lights party: Vivian Gaye is second from let, Sari Maritza is on the far right,
Carlyle Robinson is standing behind her. 
Charlie with a chef at the Ritz-Carlton

World Tour Revisited: I follow Chaplin on his 1931-32 tour of the world. 

Monday, February 25, 2013

World Tour (1931-32) Revisited: Charlie meets George Bernard Shaw at a luncheon hosted by Lady Astor, Feb. 25th, 1931

L-R: Aviator Amy Johnson (standing arm in arm with Charlie), Lady Astor, George Bernard Shaw
 (petting a greyhound), Lord Astor, and Ralph Barton (far right).

Charlie originally planned to meet Shaw during his visit to London in 1921, but when he arrived at his doorstep, he suddenly felt "self-conscious and silly," so he changed his mind.  Ten years later, Charlie admitted he was still nervous about meeting the great playwright but after a discussion on art and world economics, he decided that Shaw was "a benign gentleman who uses his intellect as a defensive mechanism to hide his sentimentality." *

Lady Astor was born in Virginia and was the first woman to sit as a member of Parliament in the British House of Commons. Charlie was very fond of her and thought she would have made a wonderful actress: "Toward the end of lunch," he remembered, "Lady Astor put in some comedy buck teeth that covered her own and gave an imitation of a Victorian lady speaking at an equestrian club. The teeth distorted her face with a most comical expression. She said fervently: "In our day we British women followed the hounds in proper ladylike fashion--not in the vulgar cross-legged style of those Western hussies in America. We rode sidesaddle hard and fast with dignity and womanly comeliness." **

Charlie remembered that during this post-lunch photo session a cameraman asked Shaw to "turn this side."
 He replied "good-naturedly": "I'll do nothing of the kind, this is the only side you'll get." *

Two days later, Shaw and Lady Astor would be Charlie's guests at the London opening of City Lights. I will have more on that later this week.

*"A Comedian Sees The World, Part One," A Woman's Home Companion, September 1933
**My Autobiography, 1964