OK, not exactly a cinephile, but certainly someone who is reasonably well-versed in several genres of film and has a great love of it.
So how the hell did I not know that "The Rabbit Of Seville" (1950) was influenced by Charlie Chaplin's "The Great Dictator" (1940)?
Granted, I hadn't seen the film until tonight, so obviously if I had seen this:
it would've been pretty obvious that Chaplin had a direct influence on one of Bugs Bunny's greatest cartoons (sorry, the poor quality video below is all I could find):
There's even a later scene with two people (the dictators of Tomainia and Bacteria) trying to rise above each other in barber chairs.
I can forgive myself for not having seen the film (now rectified), but how did this particular aspect slide by me all these years?
What's particularly wonderful about Chaplin's scene (choreographed to Brahms' "Hungarian Dance No. 5") is that it is done entirely in one single shot. It's effective at building the humour throughout until it ends with those perfectly timed moves. There are plenty of moments like that in the film - subtle timing from Chaplin that just brings a big fat smile to your face. If his closing speech is anything but subtle (and doesn't quite serve the film as well as I felt it could have), it must've been quite amazing to see on the screen in 1940 with Hitler on the rise...