Tuesday, March 28, 2006

MEET KIERA CHAPLIN. Earlier this month, Jessica Werner profiled Kiera Chaplin for the San Francisco Chronicle. Chaplin is the youngest grandchild of Charlie Chaplin and Oona O'Neill, which makes her the great-granddaughter of Eugene O'Neill.

The article provides a peek into the relationship of Oona and her family to Eugene after Oona became engaged to Charlie in her teens.

Eugene famously (and cruelly) severed his relationship to Oona but, according to model-actress Kiera, Oona "never stopped writing him letters, looking for his affection. She even named my dad Eugene [the youngest of Charlie and Oona's eight children] after her dad." In the article, Kiera visits Tao House (where Eugene and Carlotta lived in California) for the first time and says that she hopes to finally see one of Eugene O'Neill's plays.

Here's an interesting excerpt from the article:
She stirred up some family drama of her own, appearing topless, with a pierced nipple, on the cover of France's Photo magazine. At 16 she met her fiancé, French financier and photographer Ale de Basseville, 12 years her senior. "Given our history, no one can say a thing about it in my family, that's for sure," says Chaplin.

She enjoys people's surprised reactions to her large engagement ring in the shape of a red-eyed gold skull, which matches the band-of-skulls tattoo encircling her left upper arm. "I've always had a fascination with skulls, I don't even really know why, but I have skulls everywhere at home. I'm attracted to the idea that underneath the skin we're all the same. It's our character that makes us who we are."
Thanks to the blog Edna's Place for the lead.

Previous O'Neill coverage here and here.

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