Charlie Chaplin Comedy Film Festival
When Charlie Chaplin and his family first visited Waterville in Co. Kerry in the 1960’s, he immediately fell in love with the extraordinary beauty of the town. Chaplin regularly returned there on holidays for the rest of his life, and it is still a favourite holiday destination of his children and grandchildren. The Charlie Chaplin Comedy Film Festival, which runs in Waterville from 24 – 27 August, celebrates Chaplin’s work, as well as his association with the village.
This will be the seventh annual festival, a four day celebration packed with film screenings, guest speakers (including Cass Sunstein, Samantha Jane Power and Liam Muldowney), dance and film workshops, stand-up comedy, street entertainment and a Guinness World Record Attempt for the largest gathering of Charlie Chaplin look alikes in one place. The festival includes some truly unique venues showing Charlie Chaplin Classics, film competition screenings and circus performances from Ireland’s National Circus Fossett’s.
The film competition is the pivotal event of the festival. Filmmakers will compete in four different categories. The young filmmakers of tomorrow are encouraged with Chaplin’s of the Future and Under-18 categories, while the Comedy Film and Social Commentary Film categories reflect the two themes prevalent in Chaplin’s work.
Visitors can enjoy a trip to the Charlie Chaplin Picture Gallery and celebrate the golden age of cinema at the Laurel & Hardy Museum while there will also be a night of comedy featuring Karl Spain, Alison Spittle and Fred Cooke. Fossett’s, Ireland’s National Circus, will also be returning to Mick O’ Dwyer Park to host events in the iconic Big Top.
The Big Top will be the scene of a Guinness World Record attempt on Saturday, 27 August, when an attempt will be made to break the record for the largest gathering of people dressed like Charlie Chaplin. Participants must come in full Chaplin attire, some of which can be bought in the Charlie Chaplin Comedy Festival shop on Main Street.
Celebrate one of the 20th century’s most iconic filmmakers with a trip to Waterville this month and who knows, you might even find yourself taking part in a new world record. What a souvenir that would be.