Middle-Earth buffs who wanted to catch the first day first show of one of the most awaited movies of the year were in for a big disappointment on Friday.
The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey — the first instalment in a trilogy of films by Peter Jackson that would be a prequel to The Lord of the Rings — failed to keep a date with the city because of a glitch.
As a fan put it, it was “an unexpected epic fail”.
The glitch was not confined to Calcutta by any means. Hobbit shows failed to run across the country in the morning because the Warner Bros lab in Los Angeles had failed to supply multiplexes the “KDM code”, which is essential for downloading and digitally playing a movie.
Harsh Banka, who had gone to INOX (Forum) with a bunch of friends, could barely hide his disappointment. “It’s my birthday tomorrow and I wanted to give my friends a movie treat today, but now we have to go back without watching The Hobbit,” said the Class VI student at Don Bosco Park Circus.
Engineering graduate Shounak Sengupta, who had booked tickets well in advance, said: “We waited for a while hoping the film would start, but eventually it didn’t.”
Three to four shows, on an average, were cancelled at each multiplex, said sources.
Fans had to wait till evening to catch a glimpse of the transformation of Martin Freeman — from Dr Watson of Sherlock to the furry-footed Bilbo Baggins, straight out of the pages of Tolkien’s high fantasy novella.
“We had to cancel a few shows but fans started trooping in as soon as we started screening The Hobbit,” said an official of Fame Cinemas.
Fans, however, are sure to hit the theatres during the weekend in large numbers. “I am a huge fan and can’t wait to watch The Hobbit on Saturday. For me, it’s the biggest film of the year,” said college student Mriganka Chakraborty.