‘Middle-earth Madness’ is coming to Los Angeles on Monday, June 27th. For those of you competing for the trip to New Zealand and other great prizes, we thought we’d share a few insights about the competition. Check out the official rules over at the LordoftheRings.net and look forward to seeing you on Monday!  [Event Details] [Official Rules]

  1. Handmade costumes are preferred over store bought costumes, except for the very creative use of store bought items and how they are used.
  2. Try to keep true to Middle-earth fashion sensibilities. In other words, leave the sneakers and jeans in the car Elves. Try for a ‘tip of the head down to your toes’ look for your character.
  3. Weapons should be peace bonded, meaning they should be rendered inoperable. Swords and knives tied down, arrows should not be able to be drawn, etc. Other items, such as spears and pikes should be treated like a walking stick, rather than a weapon, and used simply as a prop. You are strongly discouraged from brandishing your weapons, even in jest or on stage, as there will be people and equipment in close proximity to the costume contest. Any deviation from this will see you disqualified from the contest and removed from the premises.
  4. This contest is a solo entrant event, but feel free to come with fellow costumed friends, as long as each person enters separately.
  5. There will be no performances on stage. The first round will be en masse in the staging area near the stage, where the judging staff will wander through looking at everyone and promote those who will earn a pass into the second round. This will be the Semi-finalist round and will include a walk across the stage, with lighting, but again, no performances. Judges will convene and decide upon those who will move on to the third round. The Finalists will be called up to the stage, and if there is time, each will be asked to briefly describe something about their costume to the crowd. Sir Richard Taylor of WETA will skype in at this time, already having in hand photos of all the Finalists, and he will make the final determination of the 6 prize winners.
  6. We are making the Registration and Waiver form available online, so if you are able to, please print and fill it out and bring it to the Best Buy with you. Also, if you have any existing photos of you in your costume, that would be excellent for the judging staff to be able to attach a photo to your entry form. This is not a requirement, but will help our judges out immensely.
  7. When filling out the entry form, please be specific about any aspect of the costume you want judges to know about, such as hand beading, leather tool work, hand knitted scarves, etc. Please use extra sheets of paper to describe details, using large font. Remember to put your name on the upper right corner of each page used
  8. If you do end up in the second round and get to participate in the stage walk, please inform contest staff of any special needs you might have, or if your costume might create difficulties managing the stage unassisted. We want to notate any requirements for assistance on the entry form, so just let us know if you think you’ll need help. There will be staff stationed on either side of the stage to help prevent accidents, so your attention to this detail is appreciated.
  9. Once you turn in your registration, we will need to get a photo of you in costume holding the number you will be issued. While this is not required the moment you register, it is required to be complete no later than 7pm. These are the photos that will be sent to Sir Richard Taylor at WETA if you make the Finalist cut, so make sure your makeup and hair and costume are ready to go when you get your picture taken.