“Kids Auto Race At Venice” is a short silent comedy film released in 1914 and directed by Henry Lehrman. The film stars Charlie Chaplin in one of his earliest roles, playing a version of his iconic Tramp character.
The film takes place at a children’s auto race in Venice, California, where a film crew is shooting a documentary. Charlie Chaplin’s character, referred to as the “Little Tramp,” is a bystander who keeps getting in the way of the film crew’s shots.
As the children’s race gets underway, Chaplin’s character becomes increasingly enamored with the camera, vying for attention and trying to get his face on film. He begins to interfere with the race, tripping over wires and distracting the drivers.
Despite the chaos he causes, Chaplin’s character ultimately manages to steal the show, with the filmmakers realizing that his antics would make for a great comedic short film. In the final scene, Chaplin’s character rides off into the sunset, chased by a mob of children.
“Kids Auto Race At Venice” is considered a groundbreaking film in the history of comedy, as it marked the first appearance of Charlie Chaplin’s iconic Tramp character on screen. The film is also notable for its use of improvisation and its blending of documentary footage with comedic elements. It remains a beloved classic of silent film comedy to this day.
Henry Lehrman, Charles Chaplin
Charles Chaplin, Henry Lehrman, Gordon Griffith