If you’re a fan of the early days of Hollywood and its early stars, you will appreciate a read of one of the autobiographies below. For each performer below, I, and millions of others, have been impressed by their movies, works and talents. Their autobiographies allowed a window into their world and a way to experience their life and times. Each lends well as a historical lesson, offering insight into early Hollywood comedians who were born over 100 years ago. Three of my favorite autobiographies on Lucille Ball, Charlie Chaplin and Groucho Marx are included below.
Love, Lucy by Lucille Ball
This autobiography written by Lucille Ball should be required reading for every I Love Lucy fan. Published after her death, Ball’s life history covered her early years in Hollywood, her relationship with Desi Arnaz, children and famous friends. When reading this, it seemed as though there were some omissions that would have been nice to hear her side of the story. Overall it was a very funny, enjoyable read and also a great opportunity to read about the life of one of the leading ladies of comedies from her own perspective.
My Autobiography by Charlie Chaplin
Charlie Chaplin penned his autobiography in 1964 while in his 70s, offering interesting insight into a life well lived. This work covered his early years in London, the beginnings of Hollywood, studio life and the many famous actors and actresses he worked with. His autobiography was considerably light in terms of the information he offered on his early marriages and love affairs before Oona O’Neill. However, you truly get a sense of Chaplin’s intelligence through his writing and appreciate his performances and characters all the more.
Groucho and Me by Groucho Marx
One of Groucho Marx’s first autobiographies written in 1959, this book was highly amusing and engaging. After reading, it was easy to see that the sense of humor Marx played in his characters was one he truly owned. Fact and fiction blur in this book, but nevertheless is it entertaining and recommended. Although, it was difficult to determine the line between the character of Groucho Marx and the actual man. Because of that I would recommend reading this before or along with a biography to help understand the facts behind his stories.