Security Concerns Curtail Rings Celebration

Plans for a night street carnival to celebrate the premiere of the second film in the Lord of the Rings trilogy have been abandoned because of heightened security fears after the deadly Bali bombings.

A daytime street party will take place instead, organizer Mark Blumsky said Monday. The stars of The Two Towers, some of whom are from the United States, will be whisked from the area as soon as the early evening premiere screening ends.

"The Americans have come through saying they're actually not happy now having a big night function," Blumsky said of the Dec. 18 local premiere.

"They're just a bit concerned about security at night with all the stars milling round with all the people," he added.

Nearly 200 people died in the Oct. 12 bombings on the Indonesian island of Bali.

The movies, adapted from the J.R.R. Tolkien trilogy, were shot simultaneously over 18 months in New Zealand and are being released over three years. The first, The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring, came out last December.

It raked in $700 million globally, set new box office records in some countries and won four Oscars from its 13 nominations.

The New Zealand launch of The Fellowship of the Ring took place in the daytime, and Blumsky said security had been tight after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.