Chris Farley explores his acting career with this autobiography

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  • Chris Farley is eager to explore more exciting roles and is set to play Roscoe “Fatty” Arbuckle in a biopic, a role that could change his career.
  • Both Farley and Arbuckle struggled with self-esteem and the pressures of the entertainment industry, finding solace in their desire to entertain and make people laugh.
  • Despite the unfortunate joke that ruined Arbuckle’s career, Farley saw the opportunity to tell Arbuckle’s story as a way to show his personal struggles and help people understand the real Chris Farley.

Despite being on the world stage for a relatively short period of time, Chris Farley Making a lasting impression as one of the leading comedians of his generation. Making a name for himself with improvisational performance through The second districtFarley hit the big time with the last five years Live on Saturday night and succeeded in transitioning to film roles with much-loved roles. But his life and career were tragically cut short by his death on December 18, 1997.

While audiences widely remember Farley for his hilarious turn as the manic motivational speaker Matt Foley, the Chippendales dancer is the opposite. Patrick Swayzeand a cute character in 1995 A boy’s house, there is another side to the comic legend that never made it to the screen. As often happens with comedians, Farley had a desire to explore more interesting stories before his death, and among the projects he lined up was a biography of the famous silent film star. Roscoe “Fatty” Arbuckle.

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Who is Roscoe Arbuckle?

Roscoe
Image via TCM

Born in 1887, Roscoe Arbuckle would make a name for himself as a young performer in vaudeville, carnivals, and traveling theater companies. Multi-talented and versatile, he sings, tells jokes, and even tries his hand at magic tricks. But physical prowess was his ultimate trademark despite his strong frame and weight of 300 pounds throughout his life. Cutting his teeth in acting for years, he gained further attention after starring in several films produced by Keystone Studios, a major producer of silent era comedies. It was around this time that he also began to take more control of his work through writing and directing. And it was while employed by Keystone that he earned the unfortunate nickname that would stick with him for many years – fat.

Rising steadily through the ranks of motion pictures, Arbuckle took over the Comique Film Corporation in 1917, cranking out several short comedies as director and star. While working at Comique, he made his greatest contribution to the film industry when he met a young and unknown actor. Buster Keaton. With a keen eye for talent and a generous spirit, he believed in Keaton as a talent and took the opportunity to hire an aspiring actor. It won’t be long before the two men form a constructive relationship that leads to a close friendship. As he took on more responsibility as a filmmaker and actor, Arbuckle’s star continued to rise even after he began relying less on physical comedy. However, in 1921, one of the film industry’s major conflicts erupted, and the 34-year-old Arbuckle found himself at the center of it.

A highly publicized scandal ruined Roscoe Arbuckle’s career

Mugshots of the silent film Roscoe Arbuckle.
Image via The Patriot-Ledger

In September 1921, Roscoe Arbuckle did very well for himself. As Hollywood’s highest-paid actor, pulling in $1 million a year from Paramount Pictures, he traveled to San Francisco to attend a Labor Day rally. In the midst of a day of bans and non-stop partying, he and his friends and acquaintances partied for three days in adjoining rooms at the St. Francis Hotel. Among the participants was a 25-year-old aspiring actor. Virginia Rappe and her friends, Maude Delmont, who was the latter would play a key role in interrupting Arbuckle’s flourishing career. According to Delmont, shortly after Arbuckle and Rappe were together privately, Rappe heard a scream, and the examiner appeared in pain and claimed that Arbuckle attacked her. After she was taken to the hospital, Rappe died on September 9 of a ruptured bladder.

With the wheels of lies set in motion, the media William Randolph Hurst Seized the incident and published the allegations, a vulgar headline about the alleged assault of actress Virginia Rappe. Although it was later determined that Maude Delmont had a history of fraud and extortion, her terrifying testimony against Arbuckle put the nail in the coffin. While the actor has some support from Buster Keaton and Charlie ChaplinBoth of them rushed to his defense and made speeches about his character, the damage to his reputation was done. according to Smithsonian Magazine, Several jurors issued the following statement in Arbuckle’s third trial: “The conviction was insufficient for Roscoe Arbuckle. We feel that a great injustice has been done to him…There is not the slightest evidence to connect him in any way with the commission of the crime.”

Although the silent film star avoided a criminal conviction, his career and public image would not fully recover. The negative publicity kept Hollywood away from Arbuckle, even leading to a temporary ban on his films before the famous Hays Code censorship regime, which would be implemented many years later due to such famous scandals involving actors and filmmakers. Under the pseudonym, Arbuckle continued to work in the 1920s as a director and even returned to his vaudeville roots. On June 29, 1933, he died of heart disease at the age of 46.

Chris Farley is interested in the story of Roscoe Arbuckle

Chris Farley in Tommy Boy
Image via Paramount Pictures

In 1997, Chris Farley rose rapidly through the ranks of fame and show business. As one of the breakout stars of his generation Live on Saturday night, he gave audiences some of the show’s most iconic characters, bringing a level of zany energy and slapstick comedy to the show that hadn’t been seen in years. But the small screen just wasn’t big enough to contain his talent as an actor, and his segue from television to film was swift. Despite the lack of enthusiasm from some critics, Farley is a favorite among moviegoers A boy’s house, Black sheepAnd Beverly Hills Ninja among others. And like many comedians, he wants to challenge himself by trying his hand at meaningful, dramatic content.

Before he died at age 33, one of the many projects Farley had in the works would see him play Roscoe Arbuckle in a biopic. In his book, The Chris Farley Show, Tom Farley (Chris’ brother) sheds light on the meetings the actor held with famous playwrights and screenwriters David Mamet to discuss the planned film. “Chris came to a meeting at a little restaurant in the neighborhood, and he was a good Chris, a well-behaved Chris, because he couldn’t believe that David Mamet wanted to meet him,” Farley wrote. “Mamet loved him. It was a great meeting. He said yes before we got up from the table, and he wrote it for Chris. To this day, I know it will change his career.” Although the film never fully got off the ground, the idea of ​​Chris Farley stepping into the silent actor’s shoes remains an exciting prospect to speculate on.

Roscoe Arbuckle’s life story has a personal resonance with Chris Farley

Tommy-Boy-chris-farley copy
Image via Paramount Pictures

Chris Farley’s struggles with self-esteem and substance abuse, the latter from the past, are well known. As is the case with many comedians, his desire to win the approval of others is certainly an influential factor in his work, so it is not surprising that he would be drawn to the life story of Roscoe Arbuckle with similarities between the two. Regarding their obvious physical resemblance and talent for slapstick comedy, Farley and Arbuckle have reservations about putting their physical girth to use for the entertainment of others. In dealing with the white-hot spotlight of fame, they struggle with the often overwhelming pressures that come with celebrity. But regardless of the level of self-awareness that can lead to insecurity, they both have an unwavering desire to entertain.

According to Tom Farley, “As soon as he heard a little about Arbuckle’s life, he said, ‘This is me.’ It’s the whole idea that nobody understands the real people underneath, ‘I’ll tell them about the real Fatty Arbuckle, and maybe they’ll understand the real Chris Farley.’ “Perhaps such a role will open new and better doors for Chris Farley, bringing him to the heights of opportunity and recognition. While we will never know how much of his portrayal of Arbuckle will be, it is safe to assume that he has an innate and deep understanding of the man he is slated to play and the results may surprise viewers by revealing a level of depth of action and insight that they have never seen from a comedian.

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