The Incredible And Complicated Life Of Charlie Chaplin

Charlie Chaplin was a beloved film star in the silent screen era and beyond. His character “The Tramp” is one of the most well-known in movie history. Chaplin’s career lasted more than 75 years, but it wasn’t without controversy. His personal relationships and political leanings caused him a lot of trouble throughout a large part of his life. He had a penchant for teenaged women (even as he entered his 50s) and was investigated by the FBI.

You are sure to be surprised at how scandalous Charlie’s life was. Read on to learn more about the iconic man and his behind-the-scenes problems.

His Father Was An Alcoholic & Charlie Was Thrust Into The Spotlight At An Early Age


Photo credit: Mondadori Portfolio via Getty Images

Charles Spencer Chaplin was born on April 16, 1889, in London, England. His father had a problem with drinking and abandoned him, his mother, and the future entertainer’s older half-brother shortly after Charlie was born. Charlie’s mother Hannah Chaplin (stage name Lily Harley) was a vaudevillian and music hall singer.

When Charlie was just five years old, he entered the spotlight after his mother lost her voice during a performance. The production manager knew Charlie could sing so he pushed the young child onto the stage. Charlie’s mother was very encouraging, and it wasn’t long before he fell in love with performing.