Sennett, Mack

Sennett, Mack sĕnˈĭt [key], 1884–1960, American movie director and producer, b. Danville, Que. In 1909 he began working for D. W. Griffith at the Biograph Company, and in 1912 he organized his own Keystone studio company. Sennett's films, rarely more than one or two reels long, were slapstick comedies noted for their fantastic chases and custard pie warfare. His Keystone Kops and bathing beauties became American institutions, and Charlie Chaplin originated his Little Tramp character with the company. In 1916 he became the third producer of the Triangle Corporation with D. W. Griffith and Thomas Ince; he left Keystone in 1917. Keystone Studios, after some years of difficulty, went bankrupt in 1933.

See his autobiography, King of Comedy (1954); G. Fowler, Father Goose (1934).

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