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Actor Rupert Everett will take on the role of Miss Fritton, the harassed headmistress made famous by the late Alastair Sim, in a revival of British film comedies set in the girls' school St. Trinian's. The films originally aired in the 1950s and '60s and will be updated for a contemporary audience and, according to Everett, are likely to be more controversial than the riotous originals.
Everett said the decision to "sex up" a genre once associated with "gymslip rebellion, bun fights, and elaborate plots to blow up the school" had been the subject of heated behind-the-scenes debate, The Independent reported.
"I disagreed with everyone over whether to retain some of the innocence of the original or to update it," he told an audience at the Cheltenham Festival of Literature. "I of course wanted to make the schoolgirls into drug dealers and prostitutes and what have you. Others disagreed. But in the end it was decided that my way is how it will be."
Instead of catapults from knicker-elastic and chasing men around the lacrosse pitch, new portrayals will include issues such as teenage pregnancy and the temptations of drugs.
Everett told the audience, "I think the new films will be shocking, but you've got to remember that the original St Trinian's films were also shocking in their day. People didn't think girls would actually behave like that. We've decided that the films should be as dangerous today as they were back then, which means having to pull out all the stops." (The Advocate)