Reiss thinks the two rosaries that were made went to Kumble and Gellar as souvenirs after the shoot was over. But she knows the necklace's likeness is in high demand. "Once every six months I get somebody reaching out, 'My girlfriend's favorite movie is this. Do you sell those?' And I'm like, 'No, but you can probably find them,'" she says. And indeed you can. All you have to do is head to Etsy. Reiss has seen some of the offerings and isn't wholly impressed. "Not many of them get it right," she says. "There's a couple on Etsy that have pretty much nailed it, but even those don't all have the pearls. There's a lot of them that just have crosses with stones in that are squared off on the end and say, 'Just like the one used in Cruel Intentions.' No, it's not."
For what it's worth, it's hard to get a good look at Reiss's design in the film. The camera flits by it as it dangles in Gellar's hand. Sellers, meanwhile, have seen a business opportunity in fandom and nostalgia. One, Kerry Gridley, saw the film when it came out. "I thought I was shocking and awesome," she remembers, describing herself as more of an Annette than a Kathryn. She was already making jewelry when she needed a Kathryn-style cross for a Halloween costume. Her husband encouraged her to produce her own, and she started selling three designs in 2008. While Gridley is based out of Hawaii, she uses silversmiths in Bali to make the rosaries based off her drawings. Currently, they range in price from $60 to $100. Her busiest times are Christmas, Valentine's Day, and, naturally, Halloween.
Gridley says she was never particularly intrigued by the drug aspect of the cross. "I thought it was just a unique and beautiful piece of jewelry," she says. "It's hiding in plain sight. For myself, I don't do that stuff. I don't put things in there." She explains she tells people to put truffle salt in it, and keeps a prayer card in her own. Still, she says some people will ask, "How much does it hold?" in a way that raises eyebrows. Another seller -- who asked not to be named because of his other business interests that "clash" with a coke cross store -- said he gets some euphemistic questions from buyers. "They'll say, 'how much Sweet and Low does it hold,' or something like that," he says. He also finds people wanting to use it as an urn. (He adds that he can't sell through PayPal, Amazon, or eBay, but he's unsure whether that has to do with it being drug paraphernalia or copyright infringement. He suspects it's largely the former. Each of those platforms prevent the sale of drug paraphernalia related to the use of controlled substances.)
And then there are the superfans. Gridley recalls one man out of Australia who wanted a rosary for a sculpture he was making in Cruel Intentions' honor. It was for his home.
Even Gridley acknowledges that the reason the rosary has had such pop culture longevity has something to do with Kathryn's bad behavior. "It's taboo," she says. "People like to be a little naughty. My first reaction to it when I saw it in the movie was, 'Oh my God.' I think people are still getting that reaction when they have a cross and they show their friends they're getting that reaction."
Indeed, Cruel Intentions remains shocking. TV shows like Gossip Girl have popped up in its wake, stealing its mean-girl Upper East Side aesthetic, but even that has a hard time rivaling the frankness of Kumble's script. Kathryn is still one of the best bitches in teen cinema history, though there's now a certain righteousness to her anger. Of all the teen-focused entertainment that came out in 1999, it felt the most dangerous; in comparison, the sexcapades of American Pie seemed more wholesome. The coke-filled cross was the most tangible representation of Cruel Intentions' seedy qualities. Twenty years later, we might be a little more jaded, but we still want to feel the rush of one more hit.