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Mean Girls producer explains why new movie is not a remake

tina fey, mean girls
Mean Girls producer says new film isn't a remakeParamount Pictures

Mean Girls producers Tina Fey and Lorne Michaels have explained why the new movie is not a remake and exists on its own terms.

The upcoming film is an adaptation of the stage musical, which itself was based on the iconic 2004 film starring Lindsay Lohan and Rachel McAdams.

The latest project sees Fey return as a screenwriter in addition to her role as Ms. Norbury, with the producer joining Michaels and the film's stars in an interview for Entertainment Weekly.

tina fey, mean girls
Paramount Pictures

Related: Mean Girls musical West End tickets on sale now

"It was about: How do we do the best of the musical, plus the best of the original?” said Michaels of the new film.

"It isn't a remake, it's a new interpretation. It feels like a familiar enough story, but it's for today."

"There's no version of my existence where Mean Girls wasn't a reference or a cultural moment," added Reneé Rapp, who is reprising her Broadway role as the iconic Regina George.

"I was watching it when I was 4. It's been around for 20 years and it's just as popping as it always was. You can't avoid it because it's such a pop culture phenomenon."

bebe wood, renee rapp, avantika, mean girls
Paramount Pictures

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The film, which is directed by Samantha Jayne and Arturo Perez Jr, boasts a stacked cast including Angourie Rice, Auli'i Cravalho, Bebe Wood, Jon Hamm and Jaquel Spivey, with the latter also saying the intention was to give the film its own identity.

"We love it [the original] so much that we're going to make something fresh, because we can’t recreate it – it's too iconic," said Perez.

Jayne added: "On set, we would say, 'We want to uphold the sacred text,' but also have it feel new and fresh because it is something different. It's another take on it."

Mean Girls is released in cinemas on January 12, 2024. The musical opens in London's West End for the first time in June 2024, and tickets are available now.

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