‘Sex and the City’ Author Candace Bushnell Says Show Isn’t Feminist, Opens Up About Kim Cattrall and HBO Max Revival

Written by on October 18, 2021

Sex and the City author Candace Bushnell says HBO’s hit TV adaptation of her book should not be a model to live by.

Talking about obsessive fans for whom “the show really guides them,” Bushnell told the New York Post that landing a “Mr. Big” — Carrie Bradshaw’s (Sarah Jessica Parker) main love interest in the series — of their own should not be one’s primary goal in life.

“The reality is, finding a guy is maybe not your best economic choice in the long term. Men can be very dangerous to women in a lot of different ways. We never talk about this, but that’s something that women need to think about: You can do a lot less . . . when you have to rely on a man,” Bushnell said. “The TV show and the message were not very feminist at the end. But that’s TV. That’s entertainment. That’s why people should not base their lives on a TV show.”

The original series was based on Cattrall’s book of the same name, which itself had been adapted from her dating column — based on her own life — for the New York Observer. Darren Starr got the TV rights and turned it into the successful show that aired from 1998-2004 on HBO and spawned two feature films.

Bushnell is opening up about the show ahead of the December debut of HBO Max’s revival, And Just Like That…, which follows Carrie, Miranda (Cynthia Nixon) and Charlotte (Kristin Davis) as they navigate friendship in their 50s. Original series star Kim Cattrall famously will not return for the sequel, following a much-publicized feud with Parker.

Since the last feature film, the cast has been open about spats between Cattrall and the other stars, notably Parker. Cattrall lashed out at Parker on social media following her brother’s death in 2018 and the cast and crew opened up about behind-the-scenes drama in a podcast later that year.

Many fans — including John Oliver — aren’t happy that Cattrall isn’t returning for And Just Like That… .

Still, Bushnell defended Cattrall’s decision to pass on the revival.

“I absolutely love Kim,” said Bushnell. “But it seems she wants to do other things, and she doesn’t feel like doing the show. Maybe she doesn’t want to be that character anymore.”

Bushnell says she wasn’t surprised that HBO Max decided to do the revival — “HBO’s going to make money on it. They’re going to exploit it as much as they can” — but admits she doesn’t really know any details about the story lines.

Still, she will be watching. “Of course I’m going to watch it. … I hope it runs for six seasons. I get paid a little bit of money,” she quipped.

For her part, Bushnell next stars in a one-woman show, Is There Still Sex in the City?, based on her book. The show starts previews at the Daryl Roth Theater on Nov. 13 before opening for a 12-week engagement Dec. 7.

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