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Hobbit premiers in New Zealand, thousands turn out (VIDEO)

Thousands of Tolkien fans journeyed to Wellington for the premier of 'The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey.'
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Crowds of fans cram the streets during the world premiere of 'The Hobbit' movie in Courtenay Place in Wellington on November 28, 2012. (Marty Melville/AFP/Getty Images)

Denizens of Middle Earth gathered in New Zealand's capital city on Wednesday for the premier of the "The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey."

Sam Rashidmardani, a 12-year-old who attended the premier, told the Associated Press, "It was amazing," adding, "My precious."

Reports say tens of thousands of Tolkien fans migrated to Wellington for the event, many in wizard hats, dwarf beards and other Middle Earth costumes.

The day's scene also included, according to the Wall Street Journal, a 9.4-meter effigy of Gandalf the Gray and giant silhouettes of the movie's reluctant hero, Bilbo Baggins, followed by 13 dwarf companions.

The BBC says The Lord of the Rings movies have brought about 150,000 tourists to New Zealand, which accounts for about $400 million a year in revenue.

Of course, director Peter Jackson attended the party on Wednesday.

He told Radio New Zealand before the premier he was nervous about how the film would be received.

"Nothing's ever perfect and it never will be," he said. "It's a real mistake if you say, 'We're stopping now because we've made the perfect film.' You never have and you never will."

But adoring fans on Jackson's earlier movies will almost certainly love the film no matter what.

Teenager Samantha Cooper told Reuters, "I came here to see the stars but also Peter (Jackson).... I loved the Lord of the Rings and that made me want to be here, without him none of it would be here."

Here's the Telegraph's video from the event:

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatches/news/culture-lifestyle/entertainment/hobbit-premiers-new-zealand-thousands-turn-out