Wednesday, December 18, 2002
Another NZ Premiere Report - Xoanon @ 11:48 PST

NessimŽ 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!