Odd, how inspiration can come from the most mundane sources. I was looking at the screen savers on a Windows XP box the other day and realised that the screen saver with the OpenGL "tambourine" onto which something drops, causing a splash could be the model for the formation of Saturn's rings.
One could imagine that a liquid body such as a gas giant planet could ring like a bell with shock waves that travelled all around the planet and back to the point of origin such that a splash of planet material might be ejected back into space.
A little angular momentum due to spin and the planet moving on it's course around the sun would spread the ejected material along it's orbit enough to create a ring.
I appeal to Sony for 32 Playstation 3 boxes so I can number crunch the math and write a paper.