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Charlie Chaplin Is Knighted (1975) Options
Daemon
Posted: Wednesday, March 4, 2020 12:00:00 AM
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Charlie Chaplin Is Knighted (1975)

Though he spent most of his career in the US, British-born silent-film legend Charlie Chaplin never applied for citizenship. The US took advantage of this fact in 1952, while Chaplin was overseas, revoking his re-entry permit over his alleged Communist ties. His political leanings, as well as his many affairs with young women, nearly cost him a knighthood, but after decades of debate, he was finally knighted by Queen Elizabeth II. What was stolen from Chaplin's grave shortly after his death? More...
KSPavan
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Charlie Chaplin Is Knighted (1975)
Though he spent most of his career in the US, British-born silent-film legend Charlie Chaplin never applied for citizenship. The US took advantage of this fact in 1952, while Chaplin was overseas, revoking his re-entry permit over his alleged Communist ties. His political leanings, as well as his many affairs with young women, nearly cost him a knighthood, but after decades of debate, he was finally knighted by Queen Elizabeth II.
Adyl Mouhei
Posted: Wednesday, March 4, 2020 4:54:10 AM

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LONDON, England -- Comic genius Charlie Chaplin had to wait 20 years for his knighthood because of British complicity with U.S. accusations that he was a communist and moral outrage at his marriages to girls, newly released documents reveal.

Chaplin, who was a British citizen despite living in the U.S. for lengthy periods of time, was initially earmarked to become Sir Charlie in 1956.

But it was not until 1975, when the star of the silent screen was 86, that he received his knighthood.

Official Foreign Office documents declassified on Sunday under a 30-year rule reveal the British government complied with U.S. demands that he be reviled for his left-wing sympathies.

But the British establishment was also shocked by his marrying two 16-year-olds while questions were raised over the validity of a third marriage.

Chaplin was a supporter of left-wing causes and had been named by the House of Representatives Un-American Affairs Committee's investigation into Communists in 1952.

His film "Modern Times" reveals his anti-capitalist sympathies.

On leaving the U.S., Chaplin issued a bitter statement saying he had been the object of "lies and vicious propaganda by powerful reactionary groups, who by their influence and the aid of America's yellow press have created an unhealthy atmosphere in which liberal-minded individuals can be singled out and persecuted."

Chaplin had lived in the U.S. for 42 years until 1952 but was to live much of his later life in Switzerland.

It was his predilection for young girls though which was the ultimate block on his entry into the high echelons of British social life.

By 1956, when he was originally being considered for the honour, the U.S. public and British regime had "taken exception" to Chaplin's two marriages to 16-year-old girls -- to Mildred Harris in 1918 and Lita Grey in 1924.

Gossip columns were well-fed with doubts over the validity of his later marriage to actress Paulette Goddard in China and a lengthy paternity suit in which he was declared the father of actress Joan Barry's child.

The U.S. Internal Revenue Service announced in April 1953 that Chaplin owed $1.1 million in back taxes. He was effectively barred from the U.S. as officials there declared the case against him "pretty good," the document said.

'Ungrateful' Chaplin
Chaplin had not taken U.S. citizenship and was seen as ungrateful for the prosperity that his successful career in the U.S. had bestowed upon him.

It was only after Scottish businessman Fergus Horsburgh wrote to Queen Elizabeth II in January 1972 urging an honour for the now elderly actor that a knighthood became likely.

It followed Chaplin's name being put forward by "highly reputable, indeed distinguished sources" the previous year. Chaplin had also been considered but rejected for an honour in 1969.

During this time an award for the controversial Chaplin was shelved because it could only proceed if "the queen would be prepared to overlook the charges against him," a U.S. official told the Foreign and Commonwealth Office's Protocol Department.

Horsburgh's letter to the queen said: "I respectfully suggest that the time has come to let bygones be bygones and award Charles Chaplin a knighthood.

"Not only would this give pleasure to Charlie, but it would delight millions in and out of the English-speaking world.

"Also as good a case could be made for [the author] Mr P G Wodehouse.

"No doubt these men have erred, but they are both old now. Why not forgive and forget?"

By now Chaplin, who was born in London in 1889, was living in Montreux, Switzerland. He married Oona O'Neil in 1943.

'Brilliant acting'
In considering Chaplin for an award in the 1972 New Years' honours the Protocol Department sought opinion from the British Embassies in Washington and Berne.

A document dated September 24, 1971, said: "The only Swiss reaction would be one of mild, friendly interest.

"The reaction of the rather Victorian-minded British community in Montreux, where Chaplin lives, would probably be unfavourable."

Lord Cromer, the British ambassador to Washington, said: "A lot of water has flowed under the bridge since 1956."

He wrote: "Mr. Chaplin's matrimonial and political conduct lies buried in the past and he is now regarded here more as an Anglo-American father figure responsible for some brilliant acting and having made an outstanding artistic contribution in the early days of the cinema."

Lord Cromer's only doubt was whether "such tardy recognition" of Chaplin's undisputed and long held talents would be desirable now.

He also pointed out that comic actor Bob Hope, who was born in the UK but has since become a U.S. citizen, had as strong a claim to a knighthood as Chaplin.

At the time Hope was regarded in the U.S. as "the Doyen of the American entertainment world" and had done much to promote charities and U.S. and UK friendship.

Chaplin, whose films included City Lights, Limelight, and The Kid, finally received his knighthood in 1975. He died on Christmas Day in 1977. Bob Hope received an honorary knighthood in May 1998.


http://edition.cnn.com/2002/SHOWBIZ/News/07/21/chaplin.knighthood/index.html
Wilmar (USA) 1M
Posted: Wednesday, March 4, 2020 12:39:51 PM

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Charlie Chaplin Is Knighted (1975)
Though he spent most of his career in the US, British-born silent-film legend Charlie Chaplin never applied for citizenship. The US took advantage of this fact in 1952, while Chaplin was overseas, revoking his re-entry permit over his alleged Communist ties. His political leanings, as well as his many affairs with young women, nearly cost him a knighthood, but after decades of debate, he was finally knighted by Queen Elizabeth II.
Fneto
Posted: Wednesday, March 4, 2020 3:07:29 PM

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Charlie Chaplin Is Knighted (1975)
Though he spent most of his career in the US, British-born silent-film legend Charlie Chaplin never applied for citizenship.
Ajike Omooba
Posted: Wednesday, March 4, 2020 6:59:29 PM

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"His career spanned more than 75 years, from childhood in the Victorian era until a year before his death in 1977, and encompassed both adulation and controversy." He started out really early in life.
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