Director's cut: Slimline Jackson attends King Kong premiere

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The director Peter Jackson attended the premiere of his latest film, King Kong, in New York yesterday. After a year off between the consecutive releases of the Lord of the Rings trilogy and the launch of King Kong, Jackson, almost eight stone thinner, appeared alongside Naomi Watts, Adrien Brody and Jamie Bell, who made his name playing the title role in Billy Elliot five years ago.

Remaking King Kong was the project of his dreams - the original movie was what inspired him to be a film-maker. He saw it when he was nine on TV one Friday night, and cried at the end. "I actually tried to make it when I was 12 - I got my parents' home movie camera and tried to shoot some footage. That didn't work out, but here we are in 2005."

Jackson was paid a reported $20m (£11.5m) and given complete creative control of the film, which ran £18m over budget, costing a record £116m.