The Evening Post
April 9, 2000

Welcome to Jackson's Middle Earth
Post Reporter

Ever wanted to know what an orc looks like?

More than one million Lord Of The Rings fans around the world logged on to the internet at 7pm last night to find out, jamming the preview as soon as it was posted. This is the first time fans have been able to have an official look at the $360 million trilogy being made by Peter Jackson's Miramar-based film studio.

Film and theatre director Ian Mune tried to log on without success last night -- he was like many others going to try again today. He said every hit on the Internet site was a sold seat at the cinema. "Its extraordinary. [Jackson] must be rubbing his hands with glee."

The Holmes Show was poised to catch the two minute preview live last night, but could not get past the home page of the official site. Lord Of The Rings publicist Claire Raskind said the server screening the trailer could accommodate up to one million hits simultaneously. Ms Raskind said it was hard to gauge the level of interest, but the website was overloaded as soon as it came on the Internet. "People were waiting at their computers to log on. People got up in the middle of the night to log on," she said.

Auckland-based LOTR fan Erica Challis said she was most impressed with the Internet footage, after waiting more than an hour to download it. The orcs were monsters made to look almost human, a difficult effect to achieve. Shrinking the hobbits on the screen lookedvery convincing and many special effects were very subtle, she said. "A lot of things were done without you noticing it." Other effects were less ornate. The black riders were simply shadowy figures wrapped in black, tattered robes."