By Stephen M. Silverman
Updated April 03, 2003 01:50 PM

It’s always good to have the first wife’s blessing. And that appears to be the case with Fay Wray and King Kong.

The 95-year-old actress, still famous for the seminal 1933 “King Kong,” has given her approval to the recently announced remake of the great ape classic. “Lord of the Rings” director Peter Jackson is planning a $200 million new take on “Kong,” due to be released in 2005.

Speaking to New Zealand’s Dominion Post newspaper (Jackson is from Down Under, and “Rings” was shot in his native country), Wray, who now lives in New York, said: “I think it is excellent and honorable that Peter Jackson wants to be true to the original. And I am proud that he wants to keep King Kong alive.”

She did insist, however, that no matter how much she approves, she would not participate in the new version. (There was a 1976 “Kong,” starring Jessica Lange and Jeff Bridges.) Reportedly, when Jackson first considered remaking “Kong” in 1996, he wanted Wray to deliver the famous line from the end of the original film: “It was beauty killed the beast.”

“Kong was always an independent kind of guy, and I think he should stay that way,” she joked. “But, it is wonderful knowing that people care, and that Peter Jackson cares. That is what is important.”