The Gold Rush (United Artists) (1925)

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During Run Stories Newspapers Will Use Klondike’s Chilkoot Pass Built for Chaplin Movie NEW CHAPUN FILM PROVES SUPREMACY Famous Gateway to Alaskan Gold Fields Reproduced with Startling Realism in “The Gold Rush,” Called Greatest Comedy of Master Screen Comedian “The Gold Rush,” Latest Comedy, Places Him in Place of Un¬ disputed Leadership Alaska—A land of mystery and fabled wealth, which drew the multitude ever on and on, in rainbow promise to the uttermost recesses of its wilderness and desolation. Tens of thousands who gave, and still are giving of their best years, to a struggle which has no parallel in the annals of human history. A far pil¬ grimage from civilization to the frozen solitudes of the Alaskan Northwest; marked with the life blood of men whose shallow graves dot the bleak hillsides of many a mountain pass. The long trail whose drama stretched from the shores of Puget Sound to the Arctic ocean. “The Gold Rush”—Charlie Chaplin’s conception of the Alaska which con¬ fronted the early gold seekers is pre¬ sented in the opening scenes, and are merely shown as atmospheric introduc¬ tion to the comedy classic. These scenes represent an expenditure of upward of $50,000—and were made in the High Sierras of the California Rockies. “The Gold Rush” comes to the . theatre next .under a United Artists Corporation release. The famous “Chilkoot Pass”—the gate¬ way to the Klondike gold fields—is sug¬ gested by Chaplin. The rugged camps of the pioneers are pictured, cluttering at the base of frozen cliffs. To make the pass, a pathway 2300 feet long was cut through the snow, rising to an ascent of 1,000 feet at an elevation of 9,850 feet. Winding through a narrow defile to the top of Mt. Lincoln, the pass was only made possible because of the drifts of ^ernal snow against the mountainside. The exact location was accomplished in a narrow basin—a natural formation known as the “Sugar Bowl.” To reach this spot, trail was broken through the big trees and deep snow, a distance of nine miles from the railroad, and all paraphernalia was hauled through an immense fir forest. There a construc¬ tion camp was laid for the building of the pioneers’ city. To make possible the cutting out of the pass, a club of young men, professional ski-jumpers, were em¬ ployed to dig steps in the frozen snows at the topmost point—as there the pass is perpendicular and the ascent was made only after strenuous effort. With the building of the mining camp, and the completion of the pass, special agents of the Southern Pacific railway were asked to round up 2500 men for this scene. In two days a great gathering of derelicts had assembled. They came with their own blanket packs on their backs; the frayed wanderers of the west¬ ern nation. It was beggary on a holiday. A more rugged and picturesque gather¬ ing of men could hardly be imagined. They arrived at the improvised scene of Chilkoot Pass in special trains—and what is more—special trains of dining cars went ahead of them. It was thought best to keep the diners in full view of the derelicts. To see them going through the “scene” was a study in the fine qualities of human nature. They responded to Chaplin and his director as if by magic. These wasted men trudged through the heavy snow of the narrow pass as if gold were actually to be their reward—and not just a day’s pay. To them, what mattered, they were to be seen in a picture with Chaplin—the mightiest vagabond of them all. It would be a red-letter day in their lives—the day they went over Chilkoot Pass with Char¬ lie Chaplin. The comedian himself played the role of director general. He was here, there, and _ everywhere; giving instructions; leading the men—and on occasions mix¬ ing with them throughout the day. It was possibly the most successfully han¬ dled mob scene ever assembled before a movie camera. This short episode of Chilkoot Pass will bewilder and charm the most blase movie fan. The question of leadership in the photo¬ play has, seemingly, once and for all time been decisively settled. And film- dom’s crown now rests with the one and only Charlie Chaplin. The crowds surging to the . theatre to see his latest and greatest comedy, “The Gold Rush,” a United Art¬ ists Corporation release, proves conclu¬ sively that the owner of the most famous feet in the world—more famous than Trilby’s, though, perhaps not so beauti¬ ful—has parked them firmly and trium¬ phantly on the pedestal of popular fancy. With Chaplin away from the screen for over two years, it has been easy for other comedians to surge toward the front line of popularity. It was natural that pic- turegoers should lend an ear to their claims in the comedy field and forget somewhat of the man who once won their unswerving allegiance. Now, with the showing of “The Gold Rush,” the Charlie the whole world has known is brought back, the Charlie with the big shoes, the funny little derby hat, the baggy pants and the trick cane; not to forget the famous mouse mustache— is back to prove that he still stands un¬ challenged; the king of all comedians. “This is the picture I want to be re¬ membered by,” is the only comment that Charlie has to make regarding his tri¬ umphant return to leadership. And as Manager . remarks : “How could anyone who sees ‘The Gold Rush’ ever forget Charlie Chaplin. The laughter and enjoyment he has brought to the world will be remembered forever.” | ANIMAL ACTORS IN CHAPLIN PICTURES John Brown, a Bear, and Gyp, a Dog, Have Roles in “The Gold Rush” Not the least important of the pla’ ers m “The Gold Rush,” Charlie Chaj lin s new comedy-drama, now showin the . . theatre, are tv, rurry-coated actors who never chant their costumes. John Brown, who plays the role ( himself, the big brown bear, was or member of the company on locatio who really revelled in the snow com try. After spending his days and nighi in Southern California, John Brow was taken up into the high Sierras- and no sooner had he sniffed the mour tain air than he apparently thought h had returned to the freedom of th snows. For the first few days he was un¬ manageable, and it was necessary to give him as much freedom as possible. as he sought to tear up his cage. A stockade was built for him, and for days, hour in and hour out, while the company was on location, he frolicked in the snow to his heart’s content. On the days when he appeared be¬ fore the camera, his happiness reached its zenith, as following each “take” he was turned loose and permitted to scamper off among the trees, to be re¬ captured only after much difficulty when it was necessary to send him through a scene again, or corral him for the night. Gyp, the dog in “The Gold Rush,” a United Artists Corporation release, is a permanent part of the Chaplin studio organization. He was saved from the lethal chamber in Hollywood city pound to enter the films, and his past is shrouded in mystery. But his future is assured, for after he appeared in “The Gold Rush” he became a pensioner with Bill, the ac¬ tor pup who appeared in “A Dog’s Life” with Charlie Chaplin. The two now share honors in assisting the gate¬ keeper in guarding the studio, and, strange to relate, apparently without the jealousy that is evidenced by stars of a higher scale of intelligence. ONE MAN POWER IN CHAPLIN PICTURE “The Gold Rush” Written, Di¬ rected and Produced by Famous Comedian In these days of stupendous and hurried effort on the part of producers in the studios, a motion picture of ten parts written, directed and produced by one man at his necessary leisure constitutes a distinct novelty. Such a production is “The Gold Rush,” Charlie Chaplin’s new feature length comedy-drama of Alaska, now at the . Theatre under a United Artists Corporation release. Chaplin started filming the picture on February 7, 1924, after months of preparation, and the final scenes were taken on April 16, 1925. More than 00,000 feet of film was used in the making, and the task of cutting and editing, the synchronization of scenes and action, said to be one of the se¬ crets of Chaplin successes, required months more. In contrast to ordinary methods of production, there are no time-clock LURKING TRAGEDY TURNED TO COMEDY Charlie Chaplin Does It in His New Feature, “The Gold Rush” It is related that it is much harder to move audiences to laughter than to tears, and odd devices often are used by studio and stage technicians to pro¬ duce mirth by contrasts. There isn’t anything particularly funny about a double-barrelled shot¬ gun. In fact this particular weapon and other firearms are tragedy props ten times where they appear in a com¬ edy once. Yet what has been pronounced one of the funniest scenes in Charlie Chap¬ lin’s comedy-drama of the frozen North, “The Gold Rush,” now at the . Theatre, revolves about a two-barrelled fowling piece. The comedy is achieved by Chaplin’s ludicrous efforts to keep out of the range of the muzzle of the gun, while stark tragedy impends with two men fighting for their lives over the posses¬ sion of the weapon. The scene is said to present Chaplinesque comedy at its best. Again, in a later scene of the pic¬ ture, Chaplin uses the weapon as a mirth-provoker by his efforts to hide the gun from “Big Jim McKay,” played by Mack Swain, when the lat¬ ter loses his reason through the rav¬ ages of hunger and seeks the life of the comedian. In each case lurking tragedy is the background employed to move people to mirth through contrast with the lu¬ dicrous. It is said Chaplin senses I more than any other entertainer this I affinity between seeming opposites. schedules in the Chaplin studio, as filming is not done when the master comedian is not there. It is sarid that “The Gold Rush” was made by Chaplin largely through in¬ spiration. At times he toiled feverish¬ ly on the production for days at a time, calling for the utmost efforts from his studio staff to meet his requirements. Again, he rested for weeks of studied reflection, until the necessary urge brought him to activity with new ideas for the picture. Usually Chaplin needs very little story structure to his comedy, but in “The Gold Rush” he is the center of a real drama of the frozen North in the role of a hardluck sourdough, dressed in the baggy pants, the floppy shoes, the old derby and cane of early association. Chaplin is credited with a keen sense of the affinity between the ludicrous and the pathetic, and his ten- part comedy-drama is hailed as an in¬ novation in photo-dramatics. The comedian himself directed prac¬ tically every foot of the film, even to handling an army of 2,500 men on lo¬ cation in the scene of gold seekers climbing Chilkoot Pass, a spectacular feature of the picture.