Kevin Kline attended Saint Louis Priory School in Missouri, a private, all-boys Benedictine high school similar to the school in the film. He drew inspiration for his performance from his experiences there, including one of his Latin teachers. His Priory ring can also be seen in the film.
While on location at the Emma Willard School in Troy, New York, 'Kevin Kline (I)' stood in as an English teacher for several classes who were studying Shakespeare at the time. Students gave him rave reviews as an instructor.
Ethan Canin, author of "The Palace Thief" (upon which the movie is based) appears as one of the Board members around the table during Hundert's meeting with the school's board of directors. He is seated on the Headmaster's right during the meeting.
Near towards the end of the first Mr. Julius Caesar contest up to where Hundert picks up the green leaf crown, you can briefly see the ring on his left hand. The ring in the film is Kevin Kline's priory ring. After the movie came a question and answer session. One person asked Kevin if it was his ring and he said "yes." and the whole crowd cheered on.