Saturday 24 March 2018

Bowler hats doffed in tribute to Chaplin

John O'Mahony

IT was easy to feel like a proper Charlie in the Kerry seaside village of Waterville yesterday as locals and visitors paid homage to the undisputed king of comedy.

They doffed their bowler hats and swirled their walking canes to salute the legendary Charlie Chaplin who made Waterville his second home during his long off-screen life.

And it was another Charlie that led the celebrations with RTE's Mr Bird launching the weekend tribute festival.

The guest of honour at the inaugural Charlie Chaplin Comedy Film Festival was his daughter, Josephine (62), who recalled the late comedian's fascination with the scenic Kerry village where the family holidayed for over 40 years.

The actor's grandson Arthur Gardin said the festival was a way for people to connect not only with Charlie Chaplin but with cinema in general.

Highlights of this weekend's festival include the screening of a Kerry County Council-commissioned film that charts the story of Chaplin's Waterville connections, film and video clip screenings, animation workshops for children, a tramps' ball and a visiting big top.

There will also be an attempt to create a new world record for the largest number of Charlie lookalikes, taking place on the promenade on Sunday.

Irish Independent

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