"Pirates" premiere is a wild carpet ride

Los Angels Times
By Elizabeth Snead
June 25, 2006
The most popular ride at Disneyland Saturday was the red carpet for the world premiere of “Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest.”

And the longest. The red carpet was over 1,000 ft. long, rolling down Main Street, snaking by Fantasyland and ending at Adventureland. But for hundreds of international TV, radio, internet and print reporters and thousands of fans who'd come to see “Pirates” stars Johnny Depp, Keira Knightley and Orlando Bloom, the carpet ride was disappointing.

Fans staked out coveted spots along the carpet when the park opened at 6:30 a.m. The press arrived at 3 p.m. to prepare for celebrity arrivals from 5-6. But by 6:30, only a few non-famous guests came wandering in.
Since the premiere invite stressed ‘pirate garb,' there were more eye patches, head bandanas, gold earrings, skull 'n crossbones, puffy shirts, and pirate hats, -not to mention dark sooty Jack Sparrow eyeliner - than you could shake a saber at.
Composer Hans Zimmer just tried the new updated “Pirates” ride and called it “a thrill” to hear snippets of his “Pirates” score during it. Disney chairman Dick Cook revealed plans to update the ride again for the premiere of the third "Pirates," as yet untitled, skedded for May 25, 2007.

At 8:15 p.m., frenzied screaming came from the carpet entrance. Down the line, cameramen on step ladders reported seeing Depp, Knightley and Bloom’s heads. The actors are posing for photos, zig-zagging down the carpet, talking to TV crews, then running over to shake hands and sign autographs for fans. That’s why it’s taking so long.

But it's getting late, almost 9 p.m., and the very real fear is that the film's stars will be yanked away by publicists and taken into the party so the film can begin.