The FBI compiled a 1,900-page file on Chaplin. When he left America for a trip to England in 1952 to promote his latest film, "Limelight," his reentry papers were revoked, leading him to spend the rest of his life in exile. My guest is the author of "Charlie Chaplin Vs. America," Scott Eyman. It wi
picture industry. And the head of the FBI office in Los Angeles was a man named Richard Hood because Hoover seldom went to Los Angeles. And every once in a while, Hoover would yank Richard Hood's chain and say, I want you to do this and this and this regarding Charlie Chaplin and see about this and that.
GROSS: Well, let me reintroduce you here. If you're just joining us, my guest is Scott Eyman, author of the new book "Charlie Chaplin Vs. America: When Art, Sex, And Politics Collided." We'll be right back. This is FRESH AIR.
So let's start with the sexual allegations that surrounded Charlie Chaplin. One of the things he got into trouble with was his affairs with young women. And you traced this interest in people much younger to when he was 18 and he was infatuated with a 12-year-old. And when he was, like, 52 or 53, he
so she called another friend of hers, who was a columnist for the New York Daily News based in Hollywood. And they got interviews with Joan Barry. And they began flooding the prints with interviews with Joan Barry, about how she'd been used, cast aside, impregnated - etc., etc. - by Charlie Chaplin.
S: This is FRESH AIR. I'm Terry Gross. Let's get back to my interview with Scott Eyman about his new book, "Charlie Chaplin Versus America: When Art, Sex, And Politics Collided." Chaplin was famous for his silent films and for his 1940 film "The Great Dictator," which was made the year before the U.
I want to talk with you about when Charlie Chaplin was banned from returning home to the U.S. I mean, he was born in England and spent his childhood there, but he spent, you know, the majority of his life in the U.S. He'd gone to England in 1952 to promote his latest film, "Limelight." And right bef
.Because at this - by this time, he's running for vice president on the ticket with Dwight Eisenhower. And he's got bigger fish to fry than Charlie Chaplin or Hedda Hopper. And evidently he does absolutely nothing. There's nothing in Richard Nixon's papers to indicate he took any action whatever or
GROSS: After the Immigration and Naturalization Service banned Charlie Chaplin from returning to the U.S., and he refused to fight it because he felt he'd been so mistreated in the U.S. and so smeared, he never returned to the U.S., right? That was it.
GROSS: Scott Eyman's new book is called "Charlie Chaplin Vs. America: When Art, Sex, And Politics Collided." After we take a short break, Ken Tucker will review The Rolling Stones' first collection of new songs in 18 years. This is FRESH AIR.