The Evening Post
December 4, 2001

Jackson to Put Bare Foot Forward at Premieres
Staff Reporter

Peter Jackson may wear a black tie to the premieres of The Lord Of The Rings: The Fellowship Of The Ring - just don't expect him to put on trousers or shoes.

The 40-year-old Wellington director is expected to turn up to the biggest occasions of his life looking like he just stepped off the beach in his trademark attire of baggy shorts, short-sleeved shirt and, in the best Hobbit tradition, bare feet.

Speaking to The Evening Post last week before leaving for promotional duties in Britain and the United States, Jackson was asked whether he would wear a black tie to the premieres in London (December 11, NZ time), New York (December 14), Los Angeles (December 17) and Wellington (December 19).

"I don't know," he said. "It's a question I need to ask . . . I don't know whether these premieres are black tie or not. I actually have no idea. I must find out."

But you won't be wearing shorts will you? "What's wrong with black tie and shorts? You know so long as I wear the tie do I have to wear any trousers? I don't know."

What about shoes? "No, no. Perhaps if I put a black tie on my big toe that might work."

Rings producer Barrie Osborne said Jackson wore shorts and no shoes all the time during the making of the $600 million trilogy.

"You'll see Peter jump out of a helicopter into knee-deep snow in shorts and bare feet. . ."

Celebrity gossip columnist David Hartnell said any dress was acceptable at film premieres. "Unlike the golden era of Hollywood where nothing less was worn but the most expensive gown and the men were all in beautifully designed dinner suits."

Hartnell said there were two golden rules in Hollywood.

"First you've got to have a gimmick and if Peter turns up in his garb the paparazzi will go wild with his way-out dress sense. Second, they (reporters) spell his name right. Unlike a recent story about him published last week in the London Times which calls him Terry Jackson - hello!".

Asked what the most outrageous costume he'd ever seen at a premiere was, Hartnell said: "Nothing at all. Mind you I was covering the Mr and Ms Nude film awards in LA.

"I hasten to add I was fully clothed. I look like a sack full of door knobs in the altogether."