Charles Spencer Chaplin was born in Walworth, London on April 16, 1889. His parents, Charles and Hannah Chaplin were music hall performers in England, his father was quite well know in the profession. Charlie had one sibling, a brother named Sydney. At a very early age Charlie was told that someday he would be the most famous person in the world. Charlie first appeared onstage at the age of six as an unscheduled substitute for his mother. When his performance was over the audience was throwing money up onto the stage, they loved him, and he was on his way to being the most famous person in he world.
Charlie had a very difficult childhood, by the time he had performed onstage for the first time his father had already left home permently. In June of 1896 Charlie, Sydney and their mother were forced to enter the Lambeth Workhouse for the poor. Soon after the two boys were sent to Hanwell School for Orphans and Destitute Children. Two years later after Charlies mother had a breakdown he and Sydney went to live with their father and his mistress. In the same year Charlie joined the dancing troupe, the Eight Lancashire Lads. Which eventually led to his parts in Sherlock Holmes and a few other parts. At the same time his brother Sydney had joined the famous Fred Karno Company and there he quickly became a leading player and writer.
Late in the year 1900 Charlie is cast as a cat in a production of Cinderella at the London Hippodrome. Less than a month later his father died from Alcoholism. Soon afterwards his mother Hannah is committed to the Cane Hill Asylum, and never completely recovers her sanity. For almost the next ten years Charlie performs in various rolls throughout Europe. In September of 1910 Charlie leaves Europe with the Karno Troupe for a tour in the United States and Canada.
Over the next fifty-six years Chaplin stars in, directs, produces, and composes music for countless films in America and throughout the world. The most notable of these films would be, The Tramp (1915) and The Kid (1921). On October 23, 1918 Chaplin married Mildred Harris. In the same year as The Kid Charlie gives his mother a home in California where she dies on April 28, 1928. From 1952 to 1972 Charlie did not visit the United States for a multitude of reasons, one reason being, Charlie was accused of being a Communist by a McCarthyite. Throughout his time Charlie’s life was filled with scandals, he was married four times and one of which, to Paulette Goddard is still filled with mystery.
Charlie was awarded quite a few honors, including; The Actors Guild Award, an honorary Oscar, the Golden Lion Statuette, and an Oscar. The New York Film Critics vote Chaplin the best actor of the year award in 1940, but he turned it down. And to top everything off was Knighted by Queen Elizabeth 11, of England. Charlie died on Christmas day 1977 at 4:00 A.M. at his estate in Switzerland at the age of eighty-eight.