Charlie Chaplin Returns

Charlie Chaplin buys a scooter to win over his neighbour’s son but the gift box gets swapped with another.

Written by VIDYA PRABHU | Published: July 13, 2012 3:25 am

Charlie Chaplin buys a scooter to win over his neighbour’s son but the gift box gets swapped with another. After circumventing a series of disasters,he finally gets the box back,only to realise that the kid already has a scooter. This is just another day in Charlie Chaplin’s life — and makes up one of the episodes of a new animated series that pays homage to the legend.

The first animated show on Indian television to capture the charm of Chaplin,Chaplin & Co is a co-production between France-based Method Animation and India’s DQ Entertainment. The companies have produced and are distributing worldwide the series that comprises 26 half-hour episodes.

The show,which made a debut in India on July 7,airs every Saturday at 9 am on Pogo. Krishna Desai,Director (Content),Turner International India,points out that the show has been developed in consultation with Chaplin’s family,making the content as authentic as possible. He also clarifies that the show doesn’t feature Chaplin’s original works and focuses instead on a new set of stories. “The aim is not to copy his work but to continue this amazing character’s adventures via new,modern and hilarious stories in colour. We want to provide viewers with a way to see life through the eyes of Chaplin. In spite of finding himself trapped in unknown adventures,Chaplin’s perception of the world stays positive and he always makes you laugh,” says Desai.

Chaplin & Co is set in a timeless modern world that Desai describes as “vintage,without age”. So Chaplin’s new adventures take place in a world that is neither early 20th century nor 2012 but a “creative no-man’s land”. Desai is quick to add that this show is similar to Chaplin’s other works,in that it portrays him as a worker from the lower economic strata,whose awkwardness and misunderstandings set off a chain of catastrophes. “We also explore themes regarding the environment and ecological issues in response to questions asked by today’s young audience — the kind of questions Chaplin would have loved to tackle,” he reveals.

The show has some recurring characters — neighbour’s son,pretty women and policemen who almost always fail to arrest Chaplin. Monica Tata,General Manager,Entertainment Networks,South Asia,Turner International India Pvt Ltd,asserts that the channel is hoping to strike a balance between Indian and international content with this show. “We hope to entertain children unexposed to Chaplin’s works and adults who grew up admiring him. The colour animation makes it relevant to the present and broadens its appeal,” she says.

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