Dangerous Minds must think alike. The success of the Michelle Pfeiffer film has convinced CBS of the virtues of a movie featuring another tough-minded teacher who tames a class full of roughhousing kids: The network is planning a sequel to the 1967 classic To Sir With Love to air early next year.
The movie, which will be directed by Peter Bogdanovich (Texasville), begins with Sidney Poitier’s Sir being retired from his British classroom before he’s ready to leave. Eventually, he winds up in an inner-city Chicago high school where no one else is willing to teach.
Screwing up the courage to ask Poitier to return to the head of the class was producer Craig Baumgarten’s toughest assignment. ”I knew Sidney for many years, so I met him for lunch,” says Baumgarten, who will executive-produce the TV movie along with Poitier’s partner, Cedric Scott. ”I was sure others had broached the subject of a sequel. To my great surprise, Sidney just continued to eat his lunch and said, ‘Sure, I’ll do it.”’ There are even efforts to reunite Poitier with his star student, Lulu, though she won’t remake the movie’s No. 1 theme song. Nor will Sir take its cue from the Minds‘ best-selling soundtrack. Says Baumgarten, ”There won’t be a rap version of ‘To Sir With Love.”’