New dark comedy 'Stealing Chaplin' inspired by real events

George Pennacchio Image
Friday, May 7, 2021
New dark comedy 'Stealing Chaplin' inspired by real events
EMBED <>More Videos

The new dark comedy "Stealing Chaplin" is inspired by real events about brothers who plot to steal the corpse of Charlie Chaplin and hold it for ransom.

HOLLYWOOD, LOS ANGELES -- The new dark comedy, "Stealing Chaplin," is actually inspired by real events. It's about two low-rent con men who decide to steal the corpse of the late, great Charlie Chaplin.

These petty criminals are in trouble with some bad guys in this film by director Paul Tanter.

"It's great to see sort of slightly oddball British comedy dropped into the middle of a noir-ish American crime drama. And I think, if anything, it shows that, you know, stupidity can triumph over evil," said Tanter.

The two con men need money - yesterday - and they come up with a plan involving the late comedy legend Charlie Chaplin, who happens to be buried in Las Vegas.

"The Terry character on screen is very much a watered-down version of me," admitted Doug Phillips, who wrote the script.

"What Doug's trying to say is that he's actually a real life Terry, which means he's more annoying in real life than he is on screen, if that's possible," laughed Simon Phillips.

"I don't have to work at it, George. It's my gift," Doug joked with ABC7's George Pennacchio.

One gift they received for this movie: getting Las Vegas legend Wayne Newton involved.

Newton actually saved the day when these filmmakers lost their permit to film at a cemetery.

"And he said, 'Look, why don't you come and film in my backyard?' And we sort of scoffed and laughed and said, 'Look, I think we need something a bit bigger than a backyard,'" said Tanter. "We went to Wayne's place, which was a 27-acre lush, green, wooded Arabian horse stud farm. Wayne Newton let us dig a grave in his backyard and luckily we managed to get out of there before he made us fix it."

"Stealing Chaplin" is rated "R." It's available now on digital, on demand and on DVD.