NEW LINE CINEMA VERIFIES APPROXIMATELY 1.7 MILLION DOWNLOADS OF EXCLUSIVE "THE
LORD OF THE RINGS" PREVIEW DURING 1st DAY OF OPERATION
(Los Angeles, Ca April 10, 2000) -- More web browsers
downloaded the online promotional trailer for The Lord of the Rings during its first
24-hours of availability than any other film marketing footage in history, including the
online trailer for Star Wars: Episode 1 The Phantom Menace, it was announced today by New
1,671,000 people worldwide downloaded behind-the-scenes
promotional footage of The Lord of the Rings on Friday, April 7th alone. The number has
been confirmed by Apple Computer, which also counted downloads for last years Star
Wars web extravaganza. Apple reported only 1 million downloads in the first 24-hour period
that the Star Wars theatrical trailer was available online.
Records on the official The Lord of the Rings site were
shattered almost immediately as fans of the J.R.R. Tolkein novel began logging onto
www.lordoftherings.net for exclusive behind-the-scenes access to the secretive motion
Traffic to the site was steady through the day and night due
to the studios outreach to approximately 25 The Lord of the Rings fan websites which
had been heralding the launch of the trailer for days. The promotion of the global online
event was also aided by New Line`s exclusive NeoPlanet Lord of the Rings web browser and a
unique series of internet clubs.
"This staggering number validates New Lines
investment in The Lord of the Rings," said Joe Nimziki, President of Theatrical
Marketing for New Line. "To outpace Star Wars by such a large margin is a great
indication of the popularity of this franchise."
According to Gordon Paddison, Vice President of Worldwide
Interactive Marketing, the success of the online effort is directly attributed to the
allegiance of devoted fans. "The power behind this number is the fans and the
incredible success weve had is directly attributed to the coordinated relationship
weve had with the online community. We have been working closely with The Lord of
the Rings fan sites worldwide for the past year and this staggering launch shows how
important the online community is to our marketing efforts moving forward."
One of the most celebrated novels of the 20th Century, The
Lord of the Rings is a groundbreaking epic of good versus evil, extraordinary heroes,
wondrous creatures and dark armies of terror. Generations of more than 50 million people
around the globe, in 25 different languages have grown up with this epic history. The
legend has inspired an entire genre of movies, fiction, and has influenced some of the
greatest artists of our time. It has made dreamers out of children and adults, and has
recently been named the number one most popular book of the century. But it has never been
told in its entirety on the screen.
Using the power of contemporary cinema technology, New Line
Cinema is transforming J.R.R. Tolkiens classic into a history-making motion picture
event. Beginning in the year 2001, New Line will present a grand trilogy of live-action
feature films -- The Fellowship of the Ring, The Two Towers and The Return of the King --
that will take audiences inside Tolkiens living, breathing mythology, the world that
is Middle-earth. The three separately released installments will also mark the return of
"Cliffhanger Cinema" for the first time since the serial adventures of decades
The Lord of the Rings will collectively re-tell the story of
Frodo Baggins, who battles against the Dark Lord, Sauron to save Middle-earth from the
grip of evil. In the films, Frodo and The Fellowship embarks on a desperate journey to rid
the earth of the source of Saurons greatest strength, the One Ring, a ring of such
power that it cannot be destroyed. His extraordinary adventures across the treacherous
landscape of Middle-earth reveal how the power of friendship and courage can hold the
forces of darkness at bay.
Tolkiens mythic vision will come to life through
cutting-edge cinema technology and artistry, forging unprecedented opportunities for
marketing and licensing.
By shooting all three films consecutively during one massive
production and post-production schedule, New Line Cinema is making history. Never before
has such a monumental undertaking been contemplated or executed. The commitment of time,
resources and manpower are unheard of and all three films are being produced concurrently
with the same director and core cast. Helmer Peter Jackson, whose visionary style of
filmmaking and emotional acuity won accolades for his Heavenly Creatures and The
Frighteners, brings his deep love for the source material to the project. The film
features a strong international cast that includes (in alphabetical order) Sean Astin,
Sean Bean, Cate Blanchett, Orlando Bloom, Billy Boyd, Brad Dourif, Ian Holm, Christopher
Lee, Ian McKellen, Dominic Monaghan, Viggo Mortensen, John Rhys-Davis, Liv Tyler, and
Elijah Wood. But the real star of the film is the story itself - a classic heros
quest in which the smallest of beings changes the course of the future with the vastness
of his courage.
Founded in 1967, New Line Cinema is the entertainment
industry`s leading independent producer and distributor of theatrical motion pictures. New
Line licenses its films to ancillary markets including cable and broadcast television as
well as to international venues. The company, which is a subsidiary of Time Warner Inc.,
operates several divisions including in-house theatrical distribution, marketing, home
video, television, acquisitions, production, licensing and merchandising units.