Elijah Wood (Frodo), Sean Astin (Sam), Billy Boyd (Pippin), Dominic Monaghan (Merry), and Orlando Bloom (Legolas) nevertheless played their parts, arriving in a limousine to the squeal of an overcome fan. The four hobbits and one elf cut a dash in tuxes. What they lacked in elevation – the script did call for small folk – they made up for in charisma. "This is cool," Wood said. The stars have just returned to continue filming in New Zealand after a month's break. "I've been like on a plane for like the last 20 hours but I'm all right, I'm good," Wood said. The cameras were not allowed beyond the foyer of the Millennium Hotel and the stars were whisked off to dance the night away. The curious may be able to catch a glimpse of the little men on the ski slopes of Queenstown today. "I'm going snowboarding," Wood said. "I'm an inexperienced boarder, I'll probably fall a lot. "I've only done it once." Certainly the Millennium Hotel rose to the glittering $140-a-head occasion, providing a red carpet, lashings of bubbly, nibbles and music by The Roger Fox Big Band.
Meanwhile, a company director appeared in court yesterday charged with stealing items valued at more than $1500 from the set of the film trilogy. The 39-year-old man was remanded on bail until August 4.
He was charged with stealing two The Lord of the Rings scripts valued at more than $300, 12 VHS tapes at more than
$300, prop swords at a total of $600, and various colour photographs of approved costume and armour conceptual designs valued at more than $300. The offences were said to have occurred between July 19, 1999, and June 24 this year.