Hollywood Exiles

1. An American dream

Jan. 22, 2024

Charlie Chaplin was one of Hollywood’s first and biggest stars. He helped create the art and industry of movies. But by the 1960s, he was exiled. Oona Chaplin follows her grandfather’s rise from the grinding poverty of his childhood in Victorian London to wealth and fame in Hollywood. In many ways, it seemed like the embodiment of the American Dream. But almost as soon as he hit the big time, Chaplin made some powerful enemies. Federal investigators were suspicious of his political beliefs and began to build a file on him. We learn how Hollywood became the battleground for the soul of America.

From the BBC World Service and CBC Podcasts.


Communism Condemned, Universal Newsreel, 1947 Hedda Hopper's Hollywood show, 14 January 1951 Testimony of J. Edgar Hoover before HUAC, National Archives and Records Administration, 1947

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