The low comics of the first half of the century were the inspiration
for the next theatre generation’s high art. Antonin Artaud took the Marx Brothers’ antics in “Animal Crackers” as a model for his “Theatre of Cruelty,” and Samuel Beckett deconstructed the capering of Buster Keaton, who starred in his movie “Film.” When Keaton suggested adding some funny business, the film’s director, Alan Schneider, told Keaton, “We don’t normally pad Beckett’s material.” The joke was on him. Beckett’s material WAS Keaton.
Tuesday, April 08, 2008
Beckett and Keaton: Who's Padding Who?
John Lahr on Chaplin in Brecht and Buster in Beckett: