This film is part of Free

Geni and a Genius (Series 1)

Remember when Charlie Chaplin went into space? Reality is no obstacle in this endlessly inventive silent cinema cartoon of the 'Little Tramp'

Animation & Artists Moving Image 1919 10 mins Silent


Charlie Chaplin was already silent cinema’s biggest star when this cartoon tribute took things one step further and sent him into space. The Little Tramp character had already appeared in over 60 live-action shorts films by the end of WWI. But that only fed the appetite for a number of animated cartoons featuring Chaplin’s alter ego which were produced both officially and unofficially across the globe.

Victor Hicks (1893-1946) was a caricaturist and poster artist who dabbled in animated filmmaking with these Chaplin shorts and at least one other film with his own characters 'Spick and Span'. His distinctive style works perfectly with cut-out animation. He builds his characters out of thick lines and shapes rather than just cutting out detailed ink drawings of faces and limbs as most of his contemporaries did. Unfortunately his imaginative spree somewhat ran out of steam. The follow-up episode saw Chaplin continue through space, past Jupiter and the Milky Way but ultimately left him stranded out there, with the series unfinished.