'Star Wars' Draws Global Fans for Charity

What new movie is worth waiting in line 19 days to see? Fans, some in costume, standing in the Manhattan rain all had one answer: "Stars Wars: Episode III — Revenge of the Sith." (search)

The "Star Wars" devotees came from 20 states and from Brazil, Great Britain, Netherlands, Peru, Mexico, France, Sweden, Spain and Germany.

The 19-day wait isn't as bad as it sounds. It's split among 250 people who signed up for shifts ranging from hours to days at a time, most bringing pledges to the children's foundation for every hour in line.

Another "Star Wars" line was already up and waiting in Los Angeles. For the past two weeks, fans have been camping outside Grauman's Chinese Theatre (search), where previous "Star Wars" movies played — even though the new film's Hollywood engagement is at a theater a mile away.

Fans in Paris have a three-day "Star Wars" reunion on May 13-15, featuring a panel of guests including actors Peter Mayhew and Jeremy Bulloch, while fans in the Netherlands plan an organized wait May 18-19 in Vlissingen.

At the Ziegfeld, only 30 people at a time are allowed to stand outside. One was Christian Bontiagao, 30, of Jersey City, N.J., costumed as a "Star Wars" storm trooper.

"I've been a fan since I was 6, when I saw 'Star Wars' at a friend's house," said the Nasdaq computer expert.

"This movie has been such a big part of people's lives for so long. Everyone relates to it," he said. "Everyone goes through tragedy in their lives, and this is a story of good versus evil."