Charlie Chaplin is making a comeback. The iconic comedian, actor, director and composer, who was known for his animated screen antics, is now literally getting animated for a TV series called Chaplin And Co., which launches on July 7 on Pogo, a channel that’s part of the Turner Group. “It is a respectful extension of Charlie Chaplin’s work,” says Krishna Desai, director content, Turner International India Pvt Ltd.
He adds, “It’s based on the legendary comedian, whose observations on life are even more necessary today. His pertinence, humour and emotion remain utterly intact.”
Keeping with the original style of Chaplin’s films, which became famous during in the first half of the 1900s, the TV series will be silent. “Yes, the show is mute and there is no dialogue. This also helps transcend language barriers. Plus, few characters appeal to the public like Chaplin’s Tramp does… we believe a spontaneous connection will be established between children and the Tramp in his various avatars, be it the klutz, hero, inspiring idol or big brother,” says Desai, about the series that comprises 26 half-hour episodes, which will be aired every Saturday at 9 am for an expected run time of six months.
The makers describe the universe that the animated character is set in as “vintage without age”. However, they deny that the content is inspired by the original works. “Chaplin’s new adventures take place in a world that is neither the early 20th century nor 2012. They take place in a creative ‘no-man’s land’. We also explore themes regarding the environment and ecological issues in response to questions asked by today’s young audiences — the kind of questions Chaplin would have loved to tackle,” says Desai. “Adapting Chaplin’s work may seem to be an impossible job. The aim is not to copy his work, but to continue his life via new, modern and dynamic stories; a new life in colour.”
Targeted at family
audiences between the age of seven and 77, the series has been made in 3D animation. It is a co-production between India’s DQ Entertainment and France-based Method Animation. “Chaplin and Co. was developed in consultation with the Chaplin family, making the series truly representative of the world-famous screen icon,” says Desai.