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December 13, 2002 - December 22, 2002

Sunday, December 22, 2002
The Very Secret Diary of the Portland Line Party - Xoanon @ 12:38 PST
~~Orangeblossom Brambleburr~~ writes:

10:00 Mr. Frodo and Sam arrived at theatre, only to find other hobbit there already. Other hobbit cannot decide name, but is ok, as is willing to help put up tent. Go her!

10:30 Have hijacked tall passerby to help with tent. Need to use something called vector segment. Don't know what vector segment is, but sounds kinky. Perhaps would be good with strawberries?

11:00 Tent erect. Now for video set-up. Must start sticking things in holes and getting it all turned on if we want to get any action on screen. Evening def. getting kinkier.

Midnight: Fellowship assembled. Not quite as remembered from book...seem to have two Sams and someone named Shopping Cart Bob. Also do not remember so many girls.

12:10 Have Gandalf the Reversible! Go us! Unfortunately, no pointy hat. Mr. Frodo seems particularly disappointed.

12:30 Have acquired extra Elves. Elves v. pretty, if somewhat aloof. Don't think they remember Shopping Cart Bob either.

1:00: Elves have passed into truck. Is ok, as truck parked to West. Mr. Frodo gone to bed.

2:00: Mr. Frodo woke up with v. girly scream during Mines of Moria scene. Is possible slaughter of countless Orcs not best lullaby.

3:00 Movie over. Sending scouting party to 7-11 in search of the One Nachos.

3:30 Scouting party returns safely from 7-11 bearing the One Nachos. Sam pouting...claims One Nachos not at all strawberry scented. Shopping Cart Bob not nearly so picky.

4:00 Decide to watch old animated version of quest. Cannot be so bad.

4:01 Can so.

4:15 Bashki Elves even gayer than Jackson Elves! Pretty sure still no Glorfindel, but hard to tell, as all Elves dressed like Luke Skywalker.

5:00 Reporter man here. Just in time...was about to go look for convenient Palantir, as Bashki much worse than even basic cable. Reporter
man seems v. amused, but also has shoes on. Wuss.

5:15 Fellowship breaking. Ellorgaest going to work, Gandalf and wife fallen into shadow...or car. Doesn't matter, as do not remember this part
in book either. No one shot by Orcs. Feel gypped.

5:30 Hobbits glue hair to feet in front of geeky reporter man. Ha! Always knew richly hirsute feet all fake! Naturally curly my Aunt Lobelia!

6:00 Reporter man talks to smaller Sam. Mr. Frodo tells him what to say. Beginning to have suspicions about Mr. Frodo...v. large blue eyes, from Californian part of Shire, knows many things about making of Jackson movie, small, slender, v. fruity English accent. Think he may really be
John Rhys Davies in disguise.

6:30 V. cold, and beginning to rain. Fellowship beginning to huddle together for platonic, heterosexual warmth. Hobbits mostly vanished into tents, though do not understand why Mr. Frodo needs to be alone with Sam to 'discuss garden.' Would have thought weather somewhat chilly for

Reporter man left to go to fire. Wish he would bring some back.

7:00 Most of Fellowship sleeping. Shopping Cart Bob still watching animated movies. Beginning to suspect Shopping Cart Bob has masochistic

7:30 Eye of Sauron just froze over.

8:00 Fellowship awoken by Horn of Lloyd Center. Sounded suspiciously like Shopping Cart Bob yelling "Come baaaaaaack", but know this is just

Found tent attempting to escape down street. Damned hasty tents.

8:15 Four or five hobbits roughly equal to one Bob, but have managed to corrall tent. Hobbits and Bob now cold, wet, and distinctly grumpy. Elves *definitely* the prettiest.

8:30 Best cure for hasty tents is breakfast. Is no dry food available at theatre, so have decided McDonalds acceptable substitute.

8:35 Elves glide past McMuffin carnage. V. wise and fair...recognize that coming close to hobbits would lead to definite mussing of hair. Elves
remain the prettiest.

But don't get any McMuffins.

9:00 Mr. Frodo, Little Sam, and Rosie off to Gap of Rohan, and possibly also t-shirt printer on 5th. Want Tentmoot t-shirts. Have tried to warn them t-shirts may clash with Elven cloaks, but they do not seem to care. Oh well. Guess Elves will still be prettiest.

11:00 No Gap in Rohan, no printer on 5th, Mr. Frodo still has Ring. Missions accomplished: Zero. Hobbits frozen: Three. Sam does not seem
worried, as Mr. Frodo also still has big blue eyes, even if proving rather inept at whole Questing thing.

12:00 Questioned by reporter. Stupid reporter.

12:30 Gandalf back! Still no pointy hat. On bright side, now have cookies.

1:00 More hobbits here! Noted strange glint in Sam's eyes at mention of their v. large carrots.

3:00 Sudden death trivia contest. V. exciting. Level of geekness much higher than expected, but in end, mere mortals no match for amount of information put out by extremely anal Professor-type person.

6:00 Attempted to start Jeopardy, but questions seem to have been eaten by Orcs. Stupid Orcs. Must have emergency Geekmoot and reconstruct.

6:30 Jeopardy questions reconstructed. Serious geekly showdown between Gandalf and Dave. Gandalf won. Do not meddle in the affairs of wizards, for they are subtle and quick to raise their hands.

7:00 Karaoke. Friend of Shopping Cart Bob wanted to sing "I Got You, Babe" w. Gandalf, but could not find song. Think he knew about pointy hat trick Ellorgaest and Bob both seem disturbed. May have been jealous, in which case, v. definitely Fellowship now, as all members increasingly gay.

On other hand, may simply have heard rumours that Wizards are tone-deaf.

7:30 One person still using microphone, but otherwise all pretense of conventional karaoke abandoned. Everyone singing. V. odd to see assorted hobbits, Elves, and well-bundled humans belting out "I Love Rock and Roll." Thankfully no attempts at hip-hop, as all present v. white.

8:00 Karaoke still going strong. Did not know "876-5309 Jenny" traditional Elvish ballad.

9:00 Costume contest. Arwen wins...though wonder what happened to purple dress. Seemed kind of stretched. Aragorn won second place, even without manly stubble. Think shock at seeing him bathed may have affected judges. Gandalf in third place. All v. sad not to see pointy hat trick.

9:30 Attempts at raffle ticket sales now beginning to border on extortion. Had to explain that Sting will not glow blue for sales pitch. Did not think Ellorgaest sounded like Dwarven name, but starting to have doubts, as seems v. fixated on mining all possible gold from crowd. Go him!

9:40 Has not even been 24 hours since kinky plugging-in of sound system, and now must unplug it all. Hobbits coming down with hypothermia...foot hair has small icicles and drinking song thrown off rhythm by chattering
of teeth. Too bad. Were just figuring out words.

9:45 Sam follows Mr. Frodo into theatre to mark seats. No river available. Best he can do.

10:00 Raffle finally held, to great relief of crowd. Don H. wins autographed book, much money raised for Reading is Fundamental. Sean
Astin coming to Portland! Much rejoicing, despite probability of increased confusion w. *three* Sams. Think Mr. Frodo will be v. safe.

10:15 Shadow and threat growing in East. May just be everyone finally lining up to go in.

10:30 Theatre still not allowing people in. Shadow and threat growing indeed! Tentmoot sent in out of harm's way. Mr. Frodo will take the audience to Mordor alone...

11:00 ...but Sam's coming with him!

11:00 Audience finally allowed into theatre. Now know what view must have been like from Helm's Deep as Orc army advanced. V. scary.

11:02 Sam sent back into theatre. Much pouting.

11:30 Mr. Frodo retreats into theatre. All Fellowship members now inside.

11:35 Believe may be hallucinating from cold. Seem to see Geeks engaging in some form of ritual combat or mating dance in aisles while audience throws around blown up glove.

11:37 Not hallucinating. Geeks actually attempting to enact movie...is ok, as can't be worse than Bashki.

11:40 Can so.

12:00 Movie begins. Go us!

3:00 Movie over. Aragorn still not king.

The Salt Lake Line Party See The Two Towers - Strider @ 10:39 PST

TheOneRing.net staffer MrCere sent in this report from the Salt Lake City Line Party as he recounts the events of December 18th.

Like many TORn folks I am hammered. The build up and delivery of a line party coinciding with PJ's movie is an amazing and draining process. The Salt Lake City line bought out the historic Villa theater, the grand old lady of single theater movie houses in the intermountain west.

With the entire 980 seat auditorium at our disposal we still had to turn away a lot of Salt Lake City folks once tickets ran out in early December. Badali Jewelry, (located a few miles away in Layton Utah) Decipher, Century Magic (LOTR card game store), Night Flight Comics, Borders Books, The Costum Closet and Boxandclocks.com all donated gifts for our pre-movie hand out. We had a promotional bag for every attendee which helped the donating merchants get the word out about their party.

This year's costume contest was amazing, making the front page of a local newspaper. One attendee, Jody Genessy was a big hit in his PJ costume complete with beard, hair, glasses and feet. Cameron Van Tassell won the contest as a nine-foot Ent that raised the crowd to a fever pitch as he arrived in front of the Villa sidewalk marqee.

With this report are pictures of the Ent, the PJ costume, Saruman, the main door just before they opened, the greeting sign before it was put in place (above) and fans sitting in costume awaiting the film's start.

Friday, December 20, 2002
Montreal Premiere Party Report! - Xoanon @ 17:12 PST
The week has been a hectic one on TORN, all TORN staffers are manning Line Parties around the world and up here in Montreal I've been just as busy. Many of the major news sources, the Gazette, Global and CBC Television & Radio have been calling for interviews and guest spots on various shows. I was up at 5 am to head out to a morning show earlier this week, I never knew so many people were out and about at that time of day. Besides all the movie mayhem involving TORN, I also decided to hold another line party as well, with 156 people signed up, we were in for a great night.

Before I get into details I have to thank Kathy for helping me out with many of the details, from designing the line party signs to stuffing envelopes and working the registration table. Thank you my dear.

I arranged a pre-movie party at the Unison pool hall in St.Laurent, the manager George was very very accommodating and helped us out with all the little details you need to get in line for events like this. Nicole and Seb, two ringers who were such a great help last year, arrived again to help us, you guys were amazing help thanks!

The pre-movie party was a great hit, many people showed up, there was pool tables for people to play on all night and of course, free food! The pizza, chicken wings and nachos were much appreciated by everyone, and apparently very good too!

Once the food was presented I proceeded to start the raffle, I had many a LOTR themed item to give away this year. From Fellowship scores to Decipher cards and games from Games Workshop.

At 9:00 we made our way next door to the Guzzo cinema to attend our private screening of TTT. We rented out an entire cinema for ourselves, and I must say it was very exciting!

Right now I am too tired to write any further details, this week has really caught up with me. I need some serious sleep! Here are some great pictures from the pre-party, including my parents! mom and pop Xoanon!

Again I've got thank Eric and James from Guzzo, George from Unison, Kathy, Nicole and Seb for all their help, and Agi for the pics!

Thursday, December 19, 2002
Te Papa Exhibit Report - Xoanon @ 19:46 PST
Elf Maiden writes:

Yesterday us geeks visited the Te Papa Lord of the Rings exhibit in Wellington. Unfortunately we were not allowed to bring cameras and I was not bold enough to hide mine under my shirt. I did however get a few pictures of the giant Argonath statues at the entrance and the massive LOTR poster on the museums facade (they are not developed yet though). Anyway... here is a description of some of the things we saw.

There were lots of cases displaying props which included the 3 Elven rings, the One Ring (precioussss), an Elven telescope from Rivendell (not seen in the movie), jewellery, preserved dissected rats and books from Saruman's study.

We spotted Gil-Gilad's spear, the shards of Narsil, Glamdring and a small Sting among the weapons and we even got to touch one of the Rohan swords (amazing detail!). There were costumes belonging to Aragorn, Arwen, Saruman, Gandalf the Grey, Sauron (!!!!), the Witch King, the hobbits and a small Gimli. I also recall seeing huge Treebeard and Cave Troll statues. We watched some footage about the making of Gollum and the Ents and had the oppertunity to make ourselves hobbit sized on Gandalf's cart. One of the most striking displays was that of the dead Boromir the used for the boat scene, he looks so erm... lifelike.

We saw lots of Armour... orcs, rangers, Gondorians, Elves, Rohirrim... everything. We even saw a helmet of the Citadel guard! The exhibit also showed lots of artwork by John Howe and Alan Lee and some minatures of Orthanc and Baraddur... umm that's about all I can remember... so much to take in especially after staying up late watching a midnight showing of the Two Towers at the Embassy ( not gloating ;) )

Wednesday, December 18, 2002
A Special Guest In Vancouver! - Xoanon @ 12:47 PST

ThirdOrcOnTheleft here, reporting from Vancouver... where I've just returned from a very exciting midnight showing of "The Two Towers".

After deciding at the last minute to attend the late-night show, snagging one of the few remaining tickets, and enduring the obligatory hour-long lineup, I enter the theatre to join a near-capacity crowd of seven or eight hundred very excited 'Ring' fans.

The atmosphere is electric, and cheers break out as the lights finally dim -- unfortunately, we then find out that we are going to be required to sit through TWENTY MINUTES of advertisements and coming-attraction trailers. Each ad is jeered more loudly than the last as the crowd grows more and more impatient; at last, however, the "Feature Presentation" logo appears, the audience applauds and settles back for the start of the show.

Just at that moment, though, the film reel comes to an abrupt halt -- a small spotlight appears at the bottom of the screen, and the theatre manager steps into the light holding a microphone. The audience groans. The manager taps the microphone -- it doesn't work. Louder groans. The manager clears his throat and in the loudest voice he can muster says, "Um, I just wanted to welcome you to our very first showing ever of "The Two Towers..." **applause from the crowd**

"Before we start, I just wanted to remind everyone about turning off their cell phones and pagers..." **a bit more applause, impatient rustling** "I think that was all... oh, wait -- someone wanted to say 'Hi' before we started." The audience looks around, a bit confused -- then all hell breaks loose, and seven hundred people leap to their feet and cheer wildly as Sir Ian McKellen steps into the spotlight.

After a good two or three minutes, he manages to quiet the crowd, then says, "For the last six months I've been living here in Vancouver while working on "X-Men 2,"

**huge applause, shouts of 'Magneto!'** "as well as an independent feature that I've also been filming." He mentions that film's director, Carl Bessai, then continues,

"This is my last night in Vancouver; I missed all the premieres for "Two Towers" in London, New York, etc., so I'm very happy I could be here tonight to share this opening with you. I told Peter Jackson -- who, unfortunately, could NOT be here," he adds jokingly, "as he's in his home town of Wellington for their premiere -- that I was coming by, and he sends his greetings and hopes you enjoy the film. He wanted me to tell you that he thinks "The Two Towers" is a better film than "Fellowship" -- but that he believes "Return of the King" will be better than both! We hope you enjoy it -- thank you and good night." And with a wave and a smile, he's striding up the aisle, through the cheering crowd and out the exit.

Well, needless to say, if the crowd was not well and truly hyped for "The Two Towers" before, they certainly are now -- and the next three hours are three of the best I've ever spent in a theatre in my life. I'm not sure whether he stayed to watch any of the film -- I don't think so...

but it should come as no surprise to anyone to learn that Sir Ian McKellen does NOT need a microphone to make himself heard in a packed theatre.

Two Towers Premiere: Chicago, USA - Xoanon @ 12:37 PST

Attached are our best pictures from the midnight show. The movie was awesome. Personally it moved me to tears and laughter. I can't wait to see it again tomorrow (today really) morning. I'll be meeting the Chicago Force for a show and I'll take more pictures to share.

Two Towers Premiere: Chicago, USA - Xoanon @ 12:36 PST

Attached are our best pictures from the midnight show. The movie was awesome. Personally it moved me to tears and laughter. I can't wait to see it again tomorrow (today really) morning. I'll be meeting the Chicago Force for a show and I'll take more pictures to share.

Two Towers Premiere: Boston, USA - Xoanon @ 12:21 PST

Math P writes:

Well, here is my Boston LP report. I just got home, and it's around 6.30am Dec 18. Like last year's LP, it was a huge success! Thanks to my members, TORN, and TORN's sponsor (Badali Jewelry). The Boston LP started around 7pm. We have our 3 maidens of Rohan (Amy, Maria, and Laura) who were the life of the party. Neat costumes! All 3 women of course brought home the prices for best costume.

Anyway, the wait was almost unbearable, but thanks to the lively chat and humor of every members, the painstaking hours of waiting quickly waned. More and more people have arrived by 10pm. Loews decided to let us in early, and so we were all seating nice and comfy inside the theater by 10.30pm. When midnight came, we were treated with a kind of more previews than one would expect (though it seemed eternity, it's probably just standard length of time for previews). Needless to say, the crowd just got more excited waiting for TTT to start. Alas, TTT was finally shown! It's definitely an Oscar contender (notwithstanding the beaurocrats and politics involved in this award). But then again, we're probably biased.

Everyone just loved the film. That's all I can hear people say after the show. The rest of the gang went to the Blue Diner (last year's post-show hang out), and had very interesting discussion about the film (while eating our breakfast). Needless to say, we'll all gonna be back to see the film, the 2nd, 3rd,...Nth-time before 2002 ends with a bang! Looking forward to "The Return of the King." Cheers everyone, Math

Two Towers Premiere: Boston, USA - Xoanon @ 12:21 PST

Math P writes:

Well, here is my Boston LP report. I just got home, and it's around 6.30am Dec 18. Like last year's LP, it was a huge success! Thanks to my members, TORN, and TORN's sponsor (Badali Jewelry). The Boston LP started around 7pm. We have our 3 maidens of Rohan (Amy, Maria, and Laura) who were the life of the party. Neat costumes! All 3 women of course brought home the prices for best costume.

Anyway, the wait was almost unbearable, but thanks to the lively chat and humor of every members, the painstaking hours of waiting quickly waned. More and more people have arrived by 10pm. Loews decided to let us in early, and so we were all seating nice and comfy inside the theater by 10.30pm. When midnight came, we were treated with a kind of more previews than one would expect (though it seemed eternity, it's probably just standard length of time for previews). Needless to say, the crowd just got more excited waiting for TTT to start. Alas, TTT was finally shown! It's definitely an Oscar contender (notwithstanding the beaurocrats and politics involved in this award). But then again, we're probably biased.

Everyone just loved the film. That's all I can hear people say after the show. The rest of the gang went to the Blue Diner (last year's post-show hang out), and had very interesting discussion about the film (while eating our breakfast). Needless to say, we'll all gonna be back to see the film, the 2nd, 3rd,...Nth-time before 2002 ends with a bang! Looking forward to "The Return of the King." Cheers everyone, Math

Another NZ Premiere Report - Xoanon @ 11:48 PST

Nessimë writes:

All week I have been counting down to the Auckland Gala, along with everyone at work. If I were of a self-conscious nature I would think they were trying to get me to shut up at times, but I'm optimistic and I try to believe they are just happy for me. All week people have walked past me and made comments to the effect of: "Forty nine hours, 36 minutes and 46, no... 45 seconds to go!"

I fizz momentarily, chanting mindlessly "It's gonna be so cool! It's gonna be so cool!" while they shake their heads fondly at me. Actually it's turned into a slight backing away from me today, I pity the poor, uncomprehending fools. I feel like a three year old at Christmas, except a little bigger and much less appreciated.

Last year I attended the Auckland Gala and huddled in the crowd outside, dressed in our classy clothes and watching the so-called local "celebrities" arriving in cars. We walked the red carpet to an underground pre-movie venue, but my fantastic luck meant I kept getting pushed off the red carpet by the more deserving in the crowd. Was it the fates trying to tell me something you think?

Anyway, my mother obtained tickets for me for this year, and nearly burst with pride when she gave them to me, bless her. We made our way to the Civic Theatre in Auckland

http://www.jasmax.co.nz/projects/cultural/civic.htm). The Civic is a beautiful old building recently restored. The foyer is lush and grand, with curving staircases, subtle lighting, and a fantastic India theme from the 1920s. The grandeous air of that era has been transfered even to this day, and it is the real theatre experience.

The theatre itself is an atmospheric theatre, which means that the huge domed ceiling has the appearance of a night sky (complete with stars and clouds), which is quite captivating even if the show isn't.

Not the case with TTT as you may have guessed.

My first highlight was managing to stay on the (short) red carpet, although to my disgust the paparazzi didn't love me. People flocked in dressed in anything from jeans to ballgowns - there was even an entire family wearing elf ears. We mingled, we drank, we nibbled things from trays. I tried to steal a poster but was unfortunately thwarted by the Duty Manager, so I abandoned my poster quest and dragged my companions (The Fellowship of the Fanatic) up the stairs to take our seats. Forty minutes before it started.

Well that was one of the longest waits of my life. My mother turned to me in frustration and in her genteel way finally barked "shut yer mouth" while my companion on the other side instructed me in no uncertain terms not to participate in "any more girly squeals".

Finally! Finally! One more time, FINALLY our most esteemed PJ came on screen to thank us for supporting Starship and Epilepsy New Zealand, and hoped we enjoyed the movie. He was his usual casual self and was the recipient of many cheers and whistles from the 2,000 plus crowd.

I found the experience to be similar to last year. A rush of excitement tempered with apprehension swept away with a welling up of tears at the appearance of the New Line logo. My writing skills are not quite honed enough to do justice to my readers by reviewing the film itself, but... oh okay, I cannot resist. Here is my review:

Oh the music! Oh the visuals! Oh perfection, thy name is Peter Jackson. Or maybe Richard Taylor. Or it could be Sir Ian McKellen. Or... oh you get the idea.

The aftermath? I am so proud to be a Kiwi girl. Happy TTT viewings everyone!

Tuesday, December 17, 2002
Premiere Report: Los Angeles - Xoanon @ 13:48 PST

I went up to the premier yesterday, thank goodness there was no rain then. Of course, a water main broke a few blocks down and the gutters were swollen with run off water, so it was the same effect. The big rain storm has hit today, which will affect Line parties in the area, but the premiere was in a nice bubble of decent weater.

It's rather an interesting experience, going to a premiere simply as a fan. I still love all the comeraderie you get with meeting fans from all over the place, so that part was cool. Had some good discussions with some of the cast as well, which was nice. It didn't occur to most people to actually talk to them as they asked for autographs. How silly is that? Anyhow, here are some things I gleaned from the cast members I talked with.

John Rhys Davies is feeling better, but is still taking some pain medication. He showed me the scars on his arms, mentioned his back was still really screwed up, and didn't have to use a cane to walk until he left the premiere party rather late in the evening. He was a perfect saint each and every time he came out to meet the fans, and I can't imagine anyone not falling in love with him for his efforts. He asked if anyone had seen the film, and I was the only one within earshot who had, so we discussed it briefly. I won't mention anything here, I just let him know my opinions on his performance, and a few of the other key moments of the film. JRD signed for fans across the street, then again before leaving for dinner once the film started, and then again before entering the post party. He signed for anyone who wanted him to, and checked repeatedly before leaving.

Liv Tyler was also very gracious, coming to meet the fans before heading off for dinner after the premier started. She patiently signed, and enjoyed seeing some of the things people handed her that she had never seen before. This included the Topps card I asked her to sign, and I also handed her a READ bookmark, as I know she has only seen that one other time, when I had her sign one last year. She laughed at the fact that I knew she doesn't get to see all the product out there, and thanked me for letting her have one of the bookmarks.

Orlando Bloom actually braved the torrent of water to meet the fans across the street. The guards didn't really want him getting that close, partly because it was a lot of water in the gutter, and the barricade was close to the curb, leaving very little room for Orlando to stand. He didn't seem to care, and stepped through the water constantly, grabbed the railing, held onto people when needed, and signed for as many people as he could.

I also talked with Billy Boyd on the phone, while he was walking down the press line, very surrealistic little experience. Thanks to Asfaloth for being so ambidexterous, calling me on the cellphone, and holding her camera to film Billy. Billy was hungry, I did get that loud and clear.

He was quite gracious, wanted to know what I was doing across the street, waved several times, and then just couldn't hear anymore. Not something I was expecting, so it was a very pleasant little surprise.

After the screening started and it was clear that no one else was leaving early, we went to eat at the cafe in the main theater lobby. We ended up running into Bernard Hill in the cafe. Very nice man, didn't seem to mind overly much to be signing for the few of us at the dinner table. He even answered some of my costuming questions. Yes, I'm trying to develop a costume of my own, and no, it won't be ready this week. It's a costume we won't be seeing until ROTK, so I took advantage of having someone who knows what the costume I'm trying to make looks like. I got a little detail, but it's clear I'm going to have to corner someone from WETA on this, as there is armour involved, and other details I want to make sure I get right, instead of just guessing. Anyhow, Bernard Hill was quite pleasant, then went back into the screening.

Outside the post party, several of the actors decided that the smaller crowd of fans were doable, and some still thought it was a bit overwhelming, or at least, the security did. Very interesting standing out there, because that is also where you run into more of the autograph hounds, the professional autograph seekers. They made some of the evening quite unpleasant, but a few of the actors still braved the crowd.

Viggo stopped for a few moments, and signed for a mob of people who surrounded him. JRD also made his third foray into the crowd at this point too. Most of the actors were ushered right in, with just a wave or two to the crowd. It was when they were leaving that a few of them stopped to meet the crowd. As the evening wore on, the crowd thinned out too, which was nice.

The pleasanter experience was talking with Howard Shore again. I thanked him for the wonderful talk the day before, and asked for a photo to put up with this report for TORn. That's when he asked if I'd sent in a report for the discussion the day before. I had sent one in, but didn't know it had been posted yet. He had seen it and thanked me for it , so we then discussed the movie a bit. He seemed to really enjoy how enthusiastic the audience was at the screening of Two Towers after his discussion. I gave him my opinions on the good and bad in the film, as I do have concerns that lie in both directions.

Karl Urban was the next to come out, and was surrounded, so it took a while to get to see him. He seemed to be really aware of the difference between the fans and the professional autograph hounds. I heard him on several occasions say things like "No, I already got you", "I don't know what that is, so I'm not signing it" (this was for a blank page on a folder of some sort) and he didn't want to change pens at all, just kept to the one he had. He would also ask people who the item was for, and one lady said For Me, and then gave her name. So, he signed it "For Me", to which I said, "now that's Caesar talking" and he laughed. I guess I was the only person there who knew of his past work, as most everyone else was a bit clueless and had never seen him before. I then mentioned that I'd actually worked with him at a Xena con before, so he seemed a bit more at ease when I asked for a photo with him. I really like the way he sort of took charge and didn't get taken advantage of while signing, the mark of someone who has done this before and understands fandom a bit.

The last person to come out that evening was Andy Serkis. He's a lot shorter than I had thought, but then again, the only other role I've ever seen him in is as Bill Sykes in Oliver. That's such a physically imposing role, I guess I thought he was really big. Anyhow, he was very sweet, and I couldn't help but gush at how much I loved Gollum in the film. The combination of his work to bring the character to life, and the WETA digital guys to render Gollum so perfectly is just amazing, and I had to let him know how well it worked. I'll have a picture with him soon too, as soon as I can get my film developed.

All in all, it was a very strange day. Broken Water main, flooded gutters, three moves of the crowd by security, two fights, and lots of good companions to share the experience with. What more could a fan girl like myself want from life?

Monday, December 16, 2002
LOTR Premiere: Brazil - Xoanon @ 18:12 PST
Shelob writes: It was a magic moment... or should I say three magic hours? December 14th, 9:30 A.M. After weeks of talks with the Warner Movies' brazilian Staff, there was an Avant-Première session of LoTR: TTT in Sao Paulo, and members of the Tolkien Societies were invited!

Newspapers say there were 1500 people there; 350 of them were members of the White Council (Conselho Branco), the Valinor Community, the Natocadohobbit Society, Condado, Fabrica de Aventuras, Graal. With many other Tolkienmaniac friends choosed in a contest, we could see, firsthand in Latin America, the most waited movie of the year. The condition to get in was to use a costume, so... there we were, dressed as Elves, Hobbits, Nazgûl, Rohirrin, Istari, Valar and anything remotely Tolkienian.

I (Shelob, disguised as an Elf) was one of the happy members of the White Council in the movie theater. Here are some pictures of the waiting area; we had not seen TTT yet. And we could hardly believe that we were going to do it!

We, from the White Council, plus our friends from Valinor, Natocadohobbit etc., just wanted to share our joy with all of you Tolkien fans. I will not say a word about the movie... by now, I am still under the spell of the scenes.

Greetings from South America!

Shelob, from the Conselho Branco (White Council) Headquarters in Sao Paulo, Brazil.

LOTR Premiere Report: Amsterdam - Xoanon @ 14:27 PST
Jeroen writes: Hi, thought I'd write in my short review. I have seen the move two times now (I was that lucky) and will keep it as spoiler-free as possible

PJ already mentioned it himself : with this movie he allowed himself to add more bits and pieces of himself and be less faithfull to the book. This is very true but (and that's a big BUT) it all is done in such a way that the essence of the story remains true to what Tolkien wrote.

TTT immediately blasts off with an jawdropping opening sequence. At first, all is quiet. Then you hear some familiar phrases... And then... WOW !

The movie switches back and forth to Frodo and Sam, Merry and Pippin, and the pursuers Aragorn, Gimli and Legolas. Most of the time is spent with Aragorn and his companions. In TTT more empasis is laid on the fact that Aragorn still has to earn his throne and to do that, he has to become a true leader. That also means to sometimes support one who appears to be not that good a leader himself and/or to go against the odds and hope for the best. This ofcourse reaches it's climax at the battle of Helm's Deep which is just awesome. A true epic battle which exceeds my wildest dreams.

The story of Frodo and Sam (and Gollem) gets a fair amount of time and attention. Gollem is a completely convincing character (well done indeed Andy!) and one of the most notable additions to the cast besides being a top CGI. Expect a few smiles and jawdrops from him. Their encounter with Faramir could have done with a little more 'as told in the book' but it is not rushed story. Just shorter than I would have liked it. Then again in my opinion even the extended DVD cut of FOTR is too short.

Considerable less attention receives the story of Merry and Pippin which is a shame in my eyes. But seeing as what their part is in the book and taking into account the starting and ending point of the movie it is understandable. (Hopefully the extended DVD cures this a little.) Also, a last comment. A lot of scenes and phrases that appeared in the trailers have not made it to the final movie cut. I know this happens a lot but a lot of these scenes I thought would have been sort of necessary. Hopefully they will re-appear in the extended DVD-cut so that, as with FOTR, it will make for an even better movie.

In short : TTT is a blast that will have your ears and eyes ringing for some time. It is more overwhelming than FOTR mainly because of the fabulous battle at Helm's Deep. Which almost makes one guess that ROTK will be even more awesome. Go see this movie ! Again and again.

Thursday, December 12, 2002
Another New York Fan Report - Xoanon @ 00:26 PST
IrishAngel writes:

Yeah, this is in 3rd person. We wrote it together and we couldn't figure out any other way to write it lol. Anyways, this is the account of our night on Thursday the 5th and our incredibly lucky visit to Ziegfeld theater. OO, and speaking of. If anyone has any pictures of PJ from the premiere (we're looking for the pic of him signing things right before he went inside to the after party) could you email one of us a copy, cause that would be neat. Irishangel258@aol.com would be the place to send it, thanks. Enjoy.

Thursday started off with an omen both good and bad: a snow day. Good due to the lack of school, bad because we were worried how the weather might affect our night. But we hoped for the best anyway. We went to Lauren's house with our friend Erica, and we had a snowball fight against Lauren's sister and her friend. Erica had to go home around 2:00, so we decided to start getting ready to go, even though we weren't leaving for 2 more hours.

Lauren went to get her "Wee Scarvie",(which is a seven-inch long piece of braided yarn made to look like the Pippin scarf. Someone on the LotR board we go to makes them and gives them to everyone, and it's a way to recognize people from the site) but she had managed to lose it. We spent an hour looking for that damn thing- checking garbage, under beds, everywhere. We had finally given up, and Lauren turned to sit on her bed, when Sarah screamed, "Lauren!" She jumped and said, "What? What?" Sarah started laughing hysterically and said, "It's tied to your pants!" She had tied it to her belt loop earlier so she wouldn't lose it. We decided to take the finding of the Scarvie as a sign of good luck.

So anyway, by 4:45 we were on the train. We couldn't believe we were finally going (after planning this for about 6 months) so we recited "The Cow Jumped Over the Moon" poem from FotR to let off steam (yes, we memorized it among other songs.) Once in the city, it took us a good 15 or 20 minutes to find Ziegfield Theatre, where the premiere was being held. We stood with a group of fans across the street from the theatre, cause we actually had a better view from there than from the area next to the red carpet. Something we are always happy about is how nice and how friendly LotR fans are. We had a lot of fun just waiting there.

Anyway, the first limo pulled up and sat there for a while. Then the window pulled down a bit and the "mystery person" waved then rolled the window back up. (Lauren was watching her tape of the premiere and didn't notice the hand till then). We caught sight of a very short (buzz-cut) haircut through the closed window. We thought it was Dom, but someone pointed out the Elijah had "shaved" his head. But then the window rolled back down and sure enough, Elijah stuck his head out the window for a moment then ducked down (We believe we scared him). He then popped his head back out, waved, and then closed the window. Right after he got out waved again and headed into the swarm of press. After followed Sean Astin who waved for a while and then blew a kiss. After him a very large FedEx truck passed blocking the view. What has to be kept in mind is that at random parts during the tape we made there is a lot of shrieking because huge trucks would pass by and block the view of the limos. We personally found it hilarious to watch the tape because everyone would start screaming, "MOVE" like it was nobody's business. Quite funny.

Next, John Rhys-Davies came out of a limo. He took one look at us and put on this face, like he was going to say, "You've got to be kidding me." He thought for a second and then turned around and started to walk across the street. It was icy and snowing and cars were going by, not to mention he was still using a cane to walk around from his earlier accident, but he walked right over to us and said (We quote), "What are you sickos doing out here, don't they have shelters for you homeless people." Now that we've typed that it doesn't sound so nice, but when he said it he obviously meant it as a joke. A couple of people talked to him about him feeling better and he walked over to a few more people. We want to write him thanking him for talking to us, because he's the only person who did so all night. He was still over there when Billy arrived and though we feel kind of bad, we obviously weren't going to let Billy walk away so Lauren said, "Billy" and the people around us looked up and started shouting for him. He waved a bit and moved on. We promptly launched into the Drinking Song, which was excellent. We were sad he didn't come over, cause he owes us a hug (long story, lol)

Next (Lauren's personal favorite) Peter Jackson got out of the car. She was just so excited cause she looks up to him, being an aspiring director, and was very happy to see him. The next couple of limos were people we either didn't recognize or didn't know. Anne Hathaway got out of a car and not long afterward so did Howard Shore, who seemed very pleased when we cheered and yelled "Howard! We love your music!" The next actor out of a limo was Dom. He got out of the car and being like him self turned right to the fans and put his hands in the air and then gave a peace sign. He then walked a bit and then turned back around. He gave us a round of applause and made some bowing-like motions and then headed back into the press. The applause and bowing seem to be some sort of way of thanking us for braving the weather to see them.

After him we believe Rick Porras, the associate producer got out. Miranda Otto followed. We had to shout, "Miranda" for a while before she waved back One of the fans shouted (We quote) "Wave back! You have fans now! Get used to it! We're gonna watch the movie like 30 times!" Bernard Hill (King Theoden) later followed with a nice wave to the crowd. Hugo Weaving got out, but we all missed him cause a car went by blocking our view. Andy Serkis also waved when he got out (wearing a completely white suit) and headed into the press. We hear that Yoko Ono also got out of a limo briefly after Andy, (a truck blocked our view) and David Wenham (Faramir) appeared after her.

The next limo got a bunch of shouts when we realized that Orli had stepped out. His hair was grown out (I'm assuming for his next movie The Kelly Gang with Heath Ledger) and was pulled back in a ponytail. This we only have from memory because when he came out Lauren stopped looking in the camera and realizes now that he isn't in the shot. Silly Lauren. Oh well. Karl Urban got out of a limo after him and waved a bit. Liv Tyler got out next and she looked gorgeous. There is no way she wasn't cold in the dress she was wearing, though. Barry Osbourne and Richard Taylor came out after we had crossed the street to see better (we ended up right next to the carpet, but they had all gone in by then). Ian McKellen and Viggo Mortensen couldn't make it although we heard they were in NYC, which is a shame cause it would have been nice to see them.

After everyone was inside, we hung out for a bit talking to other fans about fan fictions. We had fun discussing Cassandra Claire's "Very Secret Diaries" and another fan fic in which the characters discover slash about themselves. We also talked to a camera, and Sarah informed him that "Frodo Lives", which caused a girl next to us to say, "Yes, Frodo does live. He's in there, and they won't let us see him!" When we asked the guy where he was from, he said, "Montreal." So that was a bit depressing, since we won't see it. Ah well.

Just as we were getting ready to go we heard, "Lauren!" over from her dad. He said it very meaningfully, so Lauren swiftly grabbed Sarah's arm and headed towards his voice. He was standing by a table by the entrance with a woman with a head set on, with a few other people raising their hands. When we got there her dad said, "Raise your hands", so we did, feeling very confused. The others when in, and the woman at the door said "Can we fit three? … OK, you can go." Lauren's dad grabbed us and walked forward. We were utterly confused to where we might be going. We had tried getting tickets to this premiere for almost two or three months and nothing happened for us, so it didn't click that it might be happening now, but there we were, standing there with seven other people on the basically empty red carpet. And we walked in… through the empty tent… through the halls… we grabbed some popcorn and soda… we were in such shock. We refused to believe we were actually going to see the movie. Sarah actually thought it was some courtesy thing for fans, to let them see the cast and crew in the theatre. We got into the theatre, and Peter Jackson was onstage, making a speech, and he called all the major cast and crew members up one at a time until they were all lined up on stage. It was when they lead us into the huge theater with everyone lined up onstage at once that changed our minds about miracles. After Peter finished talking and everybody had finished applauding they lead us to our seats. OUR SEATS! We couldn't process in our heads what was going on. They were leading us to OUR seats in theater for the world premier of Two Towers. We were just waiting to wake up. We had horrible seats- fourth row, all the way on the right- but we definitely weren't being picky.

The next three hours were some of the greatest we'll probably ever have. All we can say is that it was AWESOME. We won't give anything away, although there was one moment that completely shocked us, cause we really did not see it coming, even after reading the books twice. In truth, we barely remember the first twenty minutes because we were in such a state of shock. Helm's Deep, however, was so amazing that it in itself is reason to see the movie. It was just wonderful, and horribly scary as well. They bring back a really good joke from FotR. Gimli became the comic relief in this movie rather than Pippin, and he was hilarious. It would be getting really tense, and then Gimli would say something and the whole theatre would laugh. Speaking of which, that was the best audience ever, and not just cause the cast and crew was in it. Everyone applauded when something good happened, or when there was a particularly amazing effect, and they all laughed at the right moments. No one like said anything to be rude or anything. It was literally the perfect crowd. Also, Gollum was just amazing, but he can't be described; you have to see him for yourself. Sarah would also like to say that as a die-hard Merry fan she was immensely happy with his part in the movie. We won't say more, but she was so, so pleased that she wanted to run up to Dom and PJ and hug them to death.

After it was over, we left the theater in an odd daze. We were trying to get over the shock. We couldn't believe that we had just seen the movie that we'd been waiting to see all year. We then followed the crowd to the buses going to the after-party. We didn't have passes, but no one was checking, so we decided to try it. The bus took us to the after party, which was exactly where we wanted to be. Unfortunately, they were checking for party passes there, so we just stood outside among the fans and press. We just missed Phillipa Boyens, one of the screenwriters, who Sarah had really hoped to meet because she wants to write screenplays someday.

The first autograph we got was from Howard Shore. We repeatedly told him how wonderful his music was, and we must have thanked him about five times. (We are definitely buying the soundtrack right away) After Mr. Shore passed through we got Bernard Hill's autograph, which was cool. He did such an awesome job as Théoden, and we told him so.

Then… we heard cameras clicking behind us, so we turned around, and who was there but the man himself. Peter Jackson. We were so shocked that the man who brought the books to life was standing right in front of us. We went up to him, saying very eloquently, "Mr. J-Jackson, p-please, please can we have an autograph?" And you know what? He gave us both autographs. While he signed them we told him how much we had loved the movie and thanked him endlessly, and he actually thanked us for saying so. As far as we know, we were the only people he signed autographs for on his way in, which made us feel even more special. We honestly couldn't have asked for anything more. We really look up to Peter and it meant more then he could guess that he signed our books.

Then we saw Liv Tyler, Miranda Otto, and Andy Serkis walk in, but we couldn't get to them. Liv's shoes were so high and awkward she couldn't walk, and two people had to support her as she went up the stairs. To be fair, the shoes looked really, really nice, despite the pain they must have caused her feet.

Richard Taylor came over to us, though, and signed our books. He was so nice. He asked for our names (which is really cool of an actor or cast member to do) when he signed our books. He wrote us each a short message as well. (Lauren got "all the best" and Sarah got "cheers from Weta") When we told him that we really enjoyed the movie that night, he looked generally surprised and thanked us. We don't remember how we reacted to that cause we were just so surprised. It amazed us how many people thanked us, because it was supposed to be us thanking them.

We waited outside for a while longer before people started to come out again. There was a photographer there that was really nice who we want to thank if he reads this. We don't know what he was affiliated with, but whenever we asked for an autograph (more specifically, when we asked for Peter Jackson's autograph) he would say, "These girls here. They really want an autograph." So we want to say thanks in case he reads this cause that was cool of him. Later we went and stood next to a girl we had stood next to outside the theatre. She goes to our LotR board as well. We had fun bugging this one staff member and asking him if he could go inside and ask people to come out.

By the time people started to come out of the library it was maybe 11:45, and we couldn't feel our toes, and it was getting kind of hard to move our fingers. We were lucky enough to catch John Rhys-Davies on his way out. He called us sickos again, and we laughingly informed him that this was the second time he had called us that. He signed our books and talked to the ten of us who were standing there for a while. He then thanked us all for being such wonderful fans and walked off.

We stood there and froze for maybe another 45 minutes. While we were, there we did meet Jack Black (who signed our books) and Anne Hathaway, which was neat cause she grew up in our town and went to our high school. When we told her that, she got really excited and asked where in the town we live. She also promised us that our high school gets better (since we're only sophomores). We remember her saying that she wasn't worthy of signing our copies of FotR, which was nice (she signed them anyway, of course). We liked meeting her, cause she's living proof that it is possible to get out of this town and make something of your life.

Another big thing was that some people that came out of the party started talking to each other and saying, "Yeah give it to them." The suddenly a guy walked over to Lauren and handed her a party pass. We looked at it and were just like, "Oh my god." She quickly ran around the barriers and we heard people whispering, "She got a pass", "Someone just gave her a pass". She walked up about 12 steps and the guard stopped her, so she showed him the pass, but guess what. He wouldn't let her in. It was horrible. He must have seen her get it from the man who gave it to her. So she turned around and saw everyone one go "O" in a sympathetic way. She went back behind the bars with everyone else. We were planning on having her go inside and find the stars we hadn't met yet and ask if they would come out for a minute to talk to the people freezing to death outside. Either that or she would have asked guests if she could borrow their passes in order to get Sarah and the girl we were with inside. But it didn't work out. Oh well. By the way, in case that guy ends up reading this, thanks for giving us that chance to try to get inside.

Finally, it was so cold that Lauren's dad and Sarah were getting ready to leave, but Lauren insisted on waiting until 12:30. And you know what? At exactly 12:30 Sean Astin walked outside. We made a beeline for him, whipping out our books. He signed everyone's book and talked for a bit. People were thanking him for making Sam such a wonderful character, and he thanked us for standing outside and insisted on shaking everyone's hands. He was impressed that we had braved the cold for so long just to meet him and the others. Finally someone pulled him away, because he had to go somewhere else, but it was so sweet of him to stop and talk.

Then we really had to leave. It was just so cold, and we were already late getting home and were very tired. So we took the train home (which took forever, really) and we went to straight to bed. The only regret we have about that night is that we missed seeing Elijah, Dom, Billy, and Orli, because we would have dearly loved to get their autographs. But otherwise, it was quite literally the best night either of us has ever had. We have had daydreams about getting into the premiere for months, but we never believed it would actually happen. Thursday was really a Mary-Sue come to life, and neither of us would trade it in for anything.

More Paris Premiere Pics! - Xoanon @ 00:19 PST
La Belle Laurean sent in some great pics from the Paris TTT Premiere! Take a look!

As I not sure if someone from your team can speak French I thought you might be interested in having the latest pictures issued by AFP on the TTT Premiere in Paris yesterday.

Longue vie a TheOneRing.net !

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