The extended editions of Fellowship and Towers are being screened at the moment in Sang Am CGV theater in Seoul from December 5th to the 15th. I booked tickets last week for 2 viewings each, and “danced around like a mad thing” a la Gollum. Then, I saw a newspaper article that said the two extended The Lord of the Rings films set a new record in Korea when the tickets were sold out in ONE HOUR!! The Lord of the Rings are insanely popular here, I knew that, but when I thought about how if I had been even thirty minutes late, I realized with a shudder how I would have missed the chance to see the extended editions on the big screen. According to the article, the poor souls who were a bit late are now crashing the official Korean Lord of the Rings site demanding a longer screening period, and now, the folks at Sang Am CGV theater are seriously considering a re-release.
There was another article that showed how hard Ring-mania has hit the world over. There will be a special advance screening of the Return of the King in Seoul on December 9th, but only for executives and industry people. The article said that the security surrounding the print of film was something out of “a 007 James Bond movie”, where security officers with guns and everything will be guarding it from the minute it arrives in the airport and until it reaches the projection room, and even during screening. The viewers will also be searched and stripped of cameras, watches and even their cell phones, because most cell phones in Korea have little video camers attached to them.