Mutants have sharp heads and their lives are displayed in the circus to entertain people

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2021-04-26 04:31:19

Famous from his role in the classic “Freaks” movie, Schlitzie surprised many audiences to learn that his character was not a product of the visualization technology, but he was in real life. The small head (“pinhead”) has become the trademark. Despite suffering many disadvantages since birth and having to live a life of events, the mutant known for his innocent acting and innocent smile still has a beautiful mark on the hearts of millions of viewers. In the world.

Childhood without parents, frighteningly bizarre appearance

Schlitzie’s identity and background is scarce. According to the information on what is believed to be his death certificate, Schlitzie was born in 1901 in the Bronx, New York, USA. His birth name could be Simon Metz or Shlitze Surtees. The papers related to him are not authenticated and changed over time because in the first years of his life, he was adopted by many different families.

Even in adulthood, Schlitzie only had the mind of a 3-4 year old child, who could only speak short sentences and phrases.

It seems that all information about Schlitzie is vague and unclear, only one thing is known for sure about Schlitzie. He was born with microcephaly syndrome, a disease that arises due to the incorrect development of the brain, making the brain, skull and body smaller than normal and underdeveloped. This disease has followed him since birth and is also a factor in his entire life afterward.

It left him severely disabled both physically and mentally. Even in adulthood, Schlitzie only had the mind of a 3-4 year old kid, who could only speak short sentences and phrases. His head is small, slightly pointed, his appearance is somewhat scary. Perhaps he is also not aware of that strange appearance that makes him stick with the circus for the rest of his life.

A group of dwarves with microcephaly, including Schlitzie, regularly appear in the shows of the famous circus, touring throughout Europe and America.

Schlitzie’s Strong Mark: “The Beast”

With the mind and body of a child, Schlitzie could only make a living by making his handicap entertain people. He participated in most of the major circuses in the early twentieth century, including the Dobritsch International Theater, Ringling Bros, Barnum & Bailey, Tom Mix or Clyde Beatty. Although he is male, he often wears skirts and disguises himself on stage for decades. This funny image can make the audience amused, but behind it is the reason why everyone is bitter. It is said that Schlitzie had to wear a skirt to make it easier for his manager to change his diaper, which is essential because he also has incontinence.

Although Schlitzie had some reputation for wearing dresses on stage, his career particularly flourished in 1932, when he appeared in the popular movie “Freaks”. The film depicts the story of love and betrayal in the world of the circus industry. To this day, the film is still bold in the minds of audiences with the image of a circus full of “freak” – real mutants, like Schlitzie.

Regrettably, the popularity of “Freaks” was accompanied by a surge of criticism for so many horror scenes involving mutants, including a scene where circus performers castrate a man. cut after that).

Media general attacked the film, The Hollywood Reporter called the film “torture of the emotions, touch, brain and stomach of the audience”. Because of that, “Freaks” was banned in many cities.

The Mystery of Schlitzie: Mutants have a sharp head and their life is displayed in a circus to entertain people - Photo 2.

Although Schlitzie had some reputation for wearing dresses on stage, his career particularly flourished in 1932, when he appeared in the popular movie “Freaks”.

One woman even threatened to sue MGM Group after accusing the film of causing her to miscarriage. In the end, MGM was forced to cut the duration, then completely postpone showing the film. Later, however, a traveling performance company owned “Freaks” and played the film across the country.

Despite the negative reaction surrounding “Freaks”, Schlitzie still shined on stage. His cute, innocent performance and innocent but radiant smile help him easily sympathize with the actors in the circus as well as be loved by the audience.

Schlitzie is always excited and energetic like a child, this special feature creates a strong charm whether on stage or in real life. Though he rarely speaks, often urinates, and dresses everywhere, Schlitzie is still a rising star in the circus industry.

3 years living in a psychiatric hospital, dying and still homeless

After the controversial film “Freaks”, Schlitzie continued to stick with the circus spotlight. Schlitzie’s mark in the field was so strong that by 1936 he had his own legal guardian. It was a chimpanzee named George Surtees of Tom Mix Circus.

Surtees considers Schlitzie his son, always loving and caring for him. Schlitzie’s life and work smoothly passed until Surtees died in 1965. Surtees’ daughter did not want anything to do with Schlitzie, so she put him in a psychiatric ward in Los Angeles.

Schlitzie lived three sad and lonely years in the hospital. Although he never had a family or home, he still loves the circus and considers it his home. It was the only life he had ever known, while in the psychiatric hospital, he found only emotionless, hostile and cold.

The days of living in the hospital finally passed when a colleague – swordsman named Bill Unks happened to spot Schlitzie during a performance at the hospital.

The Mystery of Schlitzie: Mutants have a sharp head and their life is displayed in a circus to entertain people - Photo 3.
The Mystery of Schlitzie: Mutants have a sharp head and their life is displayed in a circus to entertain people - Photo 4.

Immediately, Unks persuaded the hospital to allow Schlitzie’s guardian and got the hospital’s approval. So Schlitzie continued to return to acting – the only path he had ever known.

Schlitzie then performed several more times with the Dobritch International Circus before retiring in Los Angeles. But even when “hand washing the sword”, Schlitzie still enjoyed performing and often played amusing games for everyone when feeding ducks and pigeons in MacArthur Park. Schlitzie died in 1971.

Towards the end of his life, despite being famous in the artistic path, Schlitzie never had a home or a valuable legacy. Even when he left his life, he was still homeless, unable to afford a decent tombstone in the cemetery. It wasn’t until 2007 that a fan raised money to lay a black stone that marked Schlitzie’s final resting place in Los Angeles. Through many life events, Schlitzie – a mutant with the soul of a child still lives a life worth living and keeps his bold mark in the hearts of millions of audiences around the world.

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