Rare Charlie Chaplin WW1 propaganda movie up for grabs

London: A rare Charlie Chaplin film, which was bought for 3.20 pounds on eBay, is expected to be sold for a six-figure sum when it goes under the hammer at Bonham’s in Knightsbridge, London, on 29 June.

The film, ‘Charlie Chaplin in Zepped’ is the only known surviving copy and is thought to feature some of the earliest-known animation.

The footage that lasted nearly seven minutes featured a Zeppelin raid over London in which Chaplin was shown bringing down a German Zeppelin aircraft.

The film is thought to have been made as a morale-boosting propaganda film for the British troops.

Collector Morace Park who had bought the film reel in 2009 said he had consulted various experts about the film.

Some thought it was an experimental movie, while others believed it was made without Chaplin’s knowledge.

“This film is an enigma,” the BBC quoted Park as saying.

“It leaves so many unanswered questions,” he added.

Stephanie Connell, head of entertainment memorabilia at Bonham’s, said: “It will no doubt become a significant contribution to the history of early film.”

The British Board of Film Classification (BBFC) had classified the film in 1917.