Contrary to popular belief, open casting calls for film productions are rather dull. Well, unless you’re hoping to be in The Hobbit it would seem. Then there are concerns for your safety to consider.

Fans desperately want to be a part of The HobbitOkay, so open auditions, whether you’re hoping to be a character or just an extra, tend to go like this: you queue for hours, the casting people look you over to see if you meet the requirements and then they say “thank you for coming” and you leave.

So what happens when these calls get out of hand? Peter Jackson and co just found out, after they held open auditions in New Zealand for The Hobbit, which doesn’t finish filming until March. Concerns for the safety of the 3,000 hopefuls, shut the session down early.

Organisers had expected around 1,200 people at most to turn up, and were overwhelmed by the sheer magnitude of fans who swarmed to the event. Eventually the police had to be called, by which point only 800 people had been seen.

Is anyone else baffled by the organisers seriously expecting so few people to be interested?

Have they forgotten how dedicated the Lord of the Rings fan base are? Did it not cross their minds that having three of the highest grossing films of all time precede the project,  fans would be inspired to get involved? If anything you should over-estimate, right?

The casting call asked for men under 164cm, women under 155cm, big men with “character faces” who stand over 175cm, and women with long hair to come forward.

The event took place in Lower Hutt near Wellington, where the films are currently in production, a decade after the The Lord of the Rings trilogy was made.

The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey will hit cinemas in December.

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