‘Lord of the Rings’ teaser creates frenzy
By Theresa Garner
New Zealand Herald – April 10, 2000
A two-minute trailer for The Lord of the Rings movie has spawned a global online frenzy as J.R.R. Tolkien fans devour and dissect it frame by frame.
Hundreds of Websites devoted to the film trilogy have been running hot with talk about what the fleeting images posted on the Internet represent and how accurate they are.
The fans, who see it as their duty to keep the film-makers true to Tolkien’s elaborate vision of Middle Earth, have largely given the thumbs-up to New Zealander Peter Jackson’s interpretation of the hobbits, wizards and other characters.
Christchurch man Philip Capil, who runs the Tol Galen Website devoted to the film, said that while all Tolkien fans had their own mental images of how things should look, he knew Jackson would do a good job.
“I was very impressed with the battle scene with the volcano in the background.”
More than one million people logged on to the Internet at 7 pm on Friday, jamming the preview as soon as it was posted.
Film publicist Claire Raskind said the server could accommodate up to a million hits simultaneously, and while it was hard to gauge the level of interest, 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.
“That’s so cool.”
Some people waited more than an hour to download the footage.
While fans have complained about the medieval look of the film, most were impressed.
Frame by frame, the analysis being conducted over the Web is intense: “We now believe the scene of our heroes running through the woods is after the fall of Gandalf.”
On another frame: “Current theories have this as Arwen racing away from the Riders.”
The teaser, which included several action scenes, was described by writer Michael Martinez as “a vaccine … a dose of reality” for Tolkien purists.
“So what if Jackson’s Middle Earth doesn’t look like Tolkien’s … This Middle Earth is going to jump off the screen,” he said.