For his latest work, John Waters has cast himself in a new role: a censor.
"I tried to become my own worst enemy," the filmmaker said Monday.
Waters created a G-rated version of "Pink Flamingos," his 1972 cult classic, and filmed young children reading it.
Yes, that "Pink Flamingos" -- the one with black-market baby sales, castration, and a live chicken crushed during sex. And dog-poop eating.
But none of that is in "Kiddie Flamingos," which will debut next month as part of Waters' latest art show in New York City's Marianne Boesky Gallery.
"I always joke that I wanted to remake 'Pink Flamingos' as a kiddie film," said Waters. "I hope it makes it even more perverse."
The children, who range from 6 to 10, are the offspring of friends of the director.
"I couldn't got to a school and say I was casting for a children's thing," said Waters. "That wouldn't go over well."
In the G-rated version, kids wearing simple costumes -- a missing tooth to represent Edith Massey's character, Edie -- read a cleaned-up script.
For example, Waters said, that chicken scene is now about bad table manners. The black-market baby ring has been replaced with people stealing talking dolls from rich people's cars.
Fans of his work will have no problem spotting the substitutions.
"It's a conceptual art piece," said Waters. "It's really only your perverted mind that makes it not innocent."
The video will air as part of Waters' show, "Beverly Hills John," which contemplates what's next for the filmmaker, said Elisa Smilovitz, a publicist for the gallery.
The show will run from Jan. 9 to Feb. 14 at the gallery's Chelsea location.
So what did the kids think of it all?
They appreciated the gross-out factor of even this cleaned-up version, Waters said.
"But they don't understand the perversity," he said. "That's a secret only my perverted audience and myself have."