Star Wars: The Force Awakens to premiere in Hollywood
Published 14/12/2015 | 00:06
Hollywood is preparing for one of the biggest movie premieres in its history when Star Wars: The Force Awakens is screened in three separate cinemas tonight.
The film's stars, including original 1977 cast members Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher and Harrison Ford, are all expected to join director and co-writer JJ Abrams on the red carpet amid tight security.
Invitations sent to members of the press requested they refrain from revealing spoilers.
Disney has remained tight-lipped about the premiere, but it is expected to take place at the TCL Chinese Theatre, the Dolby Theatre - home of the Oscars - and the El Capitan Theatre.
Hollywood Boulevard's TCL Chinese Theatre hosted the premiere for the first Star Wars movie in 1977. Back then, it was known as Grauman's Chinese Theatre.
F ans are already camping outside to ensure they do not miss the hottest ticket in town.
The cinema's bosses have allowed some hardcore Star Wars aficionados, many in costume, a spot on the famous hands and footprints where many stars, including Harrison Ford, have made their mark.
Two Star Wars fans hope the Force will be with them when they tie the knot on the forecourt of the famous cinema, just before they watch the new film.
Caroline Ritter and Andrew Porters flew to Los Angeles from Hunter Valley, New South Wales, Australia, to camp outside the cinema until the movie is released in America this Thursday.
Ms Ritter, 34, will walk down a makeshift aisle in a white dress accompanied by Darth Vader, while Mr Porters, 29, will wear a traditional suit but will sport a Stormtrooper bowtie and braces.
Organisers of the camp-out have secured almost half the seats in the cinema to sell to people in the queue.
Fans must spend at least 24 hours in the queue to be eligible to buy a pair of tickets, and each additional 24 hours gives the option to buy another ticket. The more hours a fan banks in the queue, the sooner they will get to choose their seats.
Nate Chukey, 45, has not left the cinema since he arrived on Saturday, December 5. He said seeing the film is only a small part of the experience.
"I was always lining up just to line up, it's a tradition and I would do it even if the movie was bad. However with JJ Abrams, old special effects, our favourite actors, the only thing left is the writing - it could be good, it could not be."
He added: "Waiting for it like this makes me appreciate it even more."
Los Angeles Police Lieutenant John Jenal told the ABC News website the premiere is being treated like other events, including the Academy Awards.
He acknowledged that The Force Awakens debut is "triple the magnitude of a typical premiere".
The Force Awakens will have its world premiere in Los Angeles tonight. The London premiere is on December 16.