Chaplin's Tramp to become 3-D cartoon

An Indian company is teaming up with two French animation firms to create 104 short 3-D animation episodes using Charlie Chaplin's previous films.

Silent film star Charlie Chaplin is about to get an up-to-date cartoon treatment in a collaboration between Indian and French companies.

DQ Entertainment, based in Hyderabad, India, says it's creating a 3-D, computer-generated TV series with French media firms Method Animation and MK2, inspired by sketches and plotlines from 70 short films made by Chaplin. Original stories will also be created for the series.

DQ Entertainment CEO Tapaas Chakravarti said his company is excited to bring Chaplin's film antics, which shot him to fame in the 1920s and '30s, to modern-day audiences because "to tickle people's funny bones, you don't really have to talk all the time and silent movies can work."

The companies plan to make some 104 episodes of six-minutes each, using Chaplin's vagabond character — known as The Tramp — with his trademark bowler hat and handlebar moustache.

Chakravarti says the shorts will be released early next year and are aimed at children above the age of six.

Chaplin's hapless, homeless character was made famous in movies such as The Kid, City Lights, The Gold Rush and Modern Times.  The actor, who also scripted and directed his own films, died in 1977 at age 88.

"We'll put him in modern situations but at the same time keeping his poetic, child-like view of the world with a retro feel," Method president Aton Soumache told Agence France-Presse.