Cast & Crew
The officer Darn Hosiery falls madly in love with Carmen, a seductive gypsy, who is adored by many men, including Escamillo, a dashing matador. Carmen responds to Hosiery's eager attentions by teasing him in front of Escamillo and the other gypsies. Meanwhile, Remendado, a diminutive smuggler, tries to woo the rotund Frasquita, but, like Hosiery, he must contend with rivals and other obstacles. When Carmen interrupts one of Frasquita's flirtations, Frasquita throws an angry punch, and the two gypsies wrestle with each other on the street until Carmen overcomes her enormous rival. After a night of dancing and drinking at the village inn, Carmen is arrested for her participation in the fight but is rescued by Hosiery, who stabs and kills a fellow officer in Carmen's defense. As Hosiery contemplates his deed, Carmen slips away from the inn with Escamillo. Hosiery pursues them and, when he finds Carmen alone, stabs her and then himself. Escamillo stumbles onto the crumpled bodies of Hosiery and Carmen and, believing them dead, leaves. Once alone, Hosiery leaps to his feet and shows a very lively Carmen that the knife he used was phony.
Late in 1915, Chaplin made a two reel parody of Carmen for Essanay. In 1915, both the Jesse L. Lasky Feature Play Co. and Fox Film Corp. made film versions of Carmen. After Chaplin left the company, Essanay added two reels of footage to the film and released it as a four-reeler. Chaplin sued Essanay for tampering with his film, but the courts ruled against him. According to modern sources, Leo White, an actor in the film, directed new sequences for the four-reeler, which featured Ben Turpin in the absence of Chaplin. In early 1920, the film was re-issued on a state rights basis by Victor Kremer Film Features, Inc. An alternate title for the film was Burlesque on Carmen. Modern sources list Bud Jameson, Laurence A. Bowes and Frank J. Coleman as cast members and R. H. Totheroh as cameraman. Character names were taken from the titles of a print of the 1920 re-issue. It is unclear whether the 1916 version contained these character names. Although all reviews of the 1916 film referred to Chaplin's character as Darn Hosiery, the 1920 film lists him only as Don José. The full name of the Remendado character was not readable on the 1920 print that was viewed.