Cell Phone in Charlie Chaplin Movie: Mystery Solved!


charlie chaplin time traveler cell phoneFootage from the 1928 Charlie Chaplin film The Circus had everyone talking about time travelers last week. The scene that created the stir shows a woman holding her left hand to their ear and talking. Filmmaker George Clarke saw the scene and deduced the woman was holding a cell phone -- and was way ahead of her time (so to speak). He made a YouTube video, and shared his finding with the world.

As thrilling as the thought of time travel is, it seems that the so-called cell phone is really just an old-time Siemens 1924 hearing aid.

Watch this:


But the guesses as to what the cell phone possibly could have been -- and the many time travel theories -- proved to be quite entertaining. Here are some of the best comments.

  1. It's an iPod!
  2. If that's a time traveler, he's in that time for a reason. If a Government/Military complex develops such a technology, would it be open to the public? And if so, it would be far over one million dollars. But it's highly improbable that it would be open to the public due to the Butterfly theory. What needs to happen is an in-depth investigation on this.
  3. She has a swollen gum and she was icing it.
  4. Maybe the cell phone is so advanced that they didn't need cell phone towers. I mean if they came up with a time machine I'm pretty sure they can come up with anything.
  5. Aliens! Aliens dressed as an old woman, accidentally get caught on a Chaplin film ...
  6. If a person wanted to provide evidence of their ability to time travel, I suppose the best way to do so would be to obtain film of oneself using a technology known to be developed after the footage was recorded. And if the footage is legitimate, perhaps we are closer to time travel than we are currently aware.
  7. Perhaps she is some crazy lady talking into a some sort of fruit -- you know like crazy people do.
  8. She's clearly using the Telepathic Communicator Crystal (TM) embedded in her left temple.
  9. She is wearing a heavy coat which suggest that it is cold, probably windy too. I think it is her purse she is holding up to her ear to keep the wind from freezing her ear.
  10. It is probably a hoax that was added to the DVD before it was produced. After all they spend hours going through these old videos and clean and enhance them. If a guy is bored, cleaning up a 1928 film and transferring it to the digital world, why not play a little prank.

Are you disappointed that the cell phone time traveler theory proved to have a logical explanation?


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Jeffrey Hauser

Why is she talking? You use a HEARING aid to hear?

nonmember avatar oliver

why did she need to talk into the hearing aide? there seems that there was no one beside her to talk to. so maybe it was a cell phone?

tayan... tayanddyl

I agree with Jeffrey!  They just want us to stop asking questions so they gave us this BS answer.  I still think it's a cellphone

Lians... Liansmommie

I don't know,  folks that is the very same photo I posted as an answer. I think maybe they're on to something! =D


It's a slient film but only because we can't hear what is going on. have you watch behind the scenes footage of a silent film being made? Everybody talked to everyone. The director never shut up. He actually step by step directed the actors. She could have been responding to that which is why she had the hearing aid to begin with.

 Put a fork in it!

diospira diospira

"I agree with Jeffrey!  They just want us to stop asking questions so they gave us this BS answer"



Since when do people have conversations with hearing aids?



Unthinking respect for authority


Geoff Dixon

what a lovely entertaining concept its good to hear, not about money or war or religion

lovin... lovinangels

There are a couple of other really interesting photos out there that could use some explanation.

Michael Moore

You can clearly see that there is no wire coming out of the bottom of the device, so it couldn't be this hearing aid. Not saying it was a cell phone, but not this hearing aid. Besides, there were no cell towers, so even if she was from the future, it wouldn't work.

Tnamari Tnamari

I saw the link in the comments before and was pretty convinced it was a hearing aide......why was she talking? Wellllll....my son catches my lips moving every so often, guess I am a nut who talks to herself and doesn't even realize it! Or maybe she was singing to herself...I do that too...

Alas, I am disappointed, I wish it was a cellphone!

nonmember avatar JohnH

How would you test your earphone if it wasn't working....by talking into it.

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