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Horde of the Rings
By Stephen D'Antal
December 2, 2003
Online Sun
Good Elf ... Liv and Orlando (Legolas, inset)
wave to fans during parade
AN orc-inspiring 125,000 Lord Of The Rings fans flocked to the world premiere of the final part of the epic last night.
Stars including Liv Tyler and Orlando Bloom were hailed by the Hobbit-loving horde at the screening of The Return Of The King, which opens in the UK on December 17.
Shire genius ... director and Hobbit lookalike Peter
Jackson  soaks up acclaim of fans in his home town
The premiere followed a giant parade through director Peter Jackson’s home town of Wellington, the Kiwi capital which has a population of just 400,000.
All three Rings films were shot in New Zealand.
Ent-ertainment ... 125,000 fans line the
streets for the parade in Wellington
The crowds cheered as the stars arrived for the premiere. But Liv, 26 — who plays Elf princess Arwen — was late for the ceremony because she was held up at her hotel trying to get into her dress.
Orlando, 26, who plays Legolas, arrived with his proud mum Sonia, who had flown in on a jet which had a huge portrait of her son painted on its fuselage.
Hob-nobbing ... from left, Billy (Pippin), Dominic (Merry),
Liv (Arwen), Elijah (Frodo), and Sean (Sam)
The 26-year-old heart-throb said: “This film is the eighth wonder of the world.”
Other stars in the parade included Sir Ian McKellen (Gandalf), Elijah Wood (Frodo), Viggo Mortensen (Aragorn), Andy Serkis (Gollum), Billy Boyd (Pippin), Bernard Hill (Theoden), John Rhys Davies (Gimli), Dominic Monaghan (Merry), Sean Astin (Sam) and Hugo Weaving (Elrond).
A star is Gorn ... Viggo celebrates
The biggest cheers of the day were reserved for the director, with many fans holding posters reading “Jackson for PM.”
But Peter, 42, said: “I’m very happy with the job I’ve got.”
Great knight ... Sir Ian's Gandalf
Jackson — who is said to have earned £90million from the trilogy to date — is famous for wearing shorts and going barefoot.
But yesterday he donned long trousers and shoes for the final instalment of his epic, which has so far taken £1.4billion worldwide at the box office.
He quipped: “I’m wearing shoes because it’s a very auspicious occasion — and because Viggo has promised he is wearing shoes too so I don’t look stupid.”
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