Monday, October 4, 2010

The New Novel: Me and Charlie Chaplin

Twelve years in the writing. And rewriting. And rewriting. So my new novel, "Shadow and Substance: My Time with Charlie Chaplin," will be off the presses in about 3 weeks. The idea hit me in 1997 or '98 in LA when I was walking around the Chaplin Stage at what was then A&M Records, then became Jim Henson Productions. The novel takes place in - naturally - Hollywood, and the time is today, and the 1920's. And yes, Chaplin is a major character in the book. A couple of other characters in the book are Fatty Arbuckle and William Randolph Hearst. I'll tell you more about it in future posts. That photo of Charlie and me was taken in Vevey, Switzerland, where Chaplin lived after he left the U.S. in 1952. For now, though, enjoy one of Charlie's most famous sequences. It's from "The Gold Rush," released in 1925.


  1. Gerry,

    Your new novel--sounds, er, well, novel! I'm eager to read "Shadow and Substance: My Time with Charlie Chaplin."

    Playing with time frames & re-writing history makes you "thoroughly modern Gerry."

    Janet Riehl

  2. Sounds like this was a labor of love. When I first met you, you were all abuzz about a Charlie Chaplin event at one of the universities/ or theaters. Your book should have a wide appeal. Three weeks and waiting!

  3. I love playing with time, Janet. I've been hooked on it since I was a wee lad reading Bradbury and Heinlein and Clarke and other sci-fi greats of the 40's and 50's. Movies and TV have taken time travel to a new level. I did it in my novel without special effects, though.

    Lnda, that must have been the Charlie Chaplin Film Festival I co-produced at Webster U a couple years ago. I love being part of an audience watching a Chaplin film. Comedy was meant to be shared. At least that's my philosophy.