We couldn’t help but wonder…will Sarah Jessica Parker and Kim Cattrall‘s feud ever really go away?
While the Sex and the City co-stars have spent more time denying rumors of any animosity than actually playing Carrie Bradshaw and Samantha Jones in the last decade, there’s no denying there’s definitely some bad blood between them after plans for a third Sex and the City film fell through in 2018.
Which is why fans were shocked when it was confirmed that Catrall would be returning as Samantha in the upcoming second season of Max’s And Just Like That… after initially choosing to sit out of the revival series that reunited Parker, Cynthia Nixon and Kristin Davis. But that doesn’t mean viewers will actually see Cattrall interact with any of her former co-stars, as Variety reported she didn’t actually see or speak to them while filming her one scene this spring.
So there’s that.
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And, sure, society does have a tendency to pit women starring on TV shows against each other (see: SATC, Gossip Girl, The Good Wife, etc.) but where there’s smoke there’s usually a fire. Sometimes, co-workers just don’t get along, like the person in E! News’ offices who likes to heat up fish in the kitchen for lunch every day. Ahem.
But, with this latest installment update in SJP and Cattrall’s long-simmering feud, we decided to take a stroll down memory lane to see all the times they’ve addressed the headlines since SATC debuted in 1998. Grab your rental…
December 2004: While there were always rumors of cat fights quietly plaguing the set of Sex and the City throughout its six-season run, things came to light as the show was ending when Cattrall told British talk show host Jonathan Ross that she had demanded more money.
“I felt after six years it was time for all of us to participate in the financial windfall of Sex and The City,” she said on Friday Night With Jonathan Ross, adding she asked to be paid $1 million per episode (up from a reported $350,000) if the show were to continue. “When they didn’t seem keen on that I thought it was time to move on.”
Parker, now 56, was paid more as she was an executive producer on the series.
May 2008: Four years later, fans were delighted when SATC returned, bringing the ladies to the big screen. But the movie, which was originally supposed to start filming right after the series wrapped, was delayed due to ongoing salary negotiations.
Parker addressed the money talk and defended Cattrall when The Telegraph visited the set of the first movie.
“She mentioned money and no one should vilify her for it,” she said. “People made a decision that we had vilified her. No one bothered to say [to the rest of us], ‘Are you disappointed by not making the movie?’ Yes. ‘Do you respect and support her choice to not do it?’ Absolutely.'”
In Marie Claire‘s cover story ahead of the film’s premiere date, former HBO CEO Chris Albrecht weighed in on the salary disputes. “When you’re keeping people for years, you have to continue to pay them more money,” he said. “Sarah was becoming more and more famous, and her salary increased beyond what was contractually committed, which is normal for hit shows. The other actresses wanted to keep up.”
December 2009: In a show of support, Cattrall and Nixon attend the NYC premiere of Parker’s new movie, Did You Hear About the Morgans?
In the same month, Parker was on the cover of Elle, and once again, talked about Cattrall and the alleged salary disputes that delayed the first movie. “I don’t think anybody wants to believe that I love Kim,” Parker told the mag. “I adore her. I wouldn’t have done the movie without her. Didn’t and wouldn’t.”
In the article, Cattrall compliments Parker, saying, “She shines and she allows you to shine as well.”
January 2010: In an in-depth interview with The Daily Mail, Cattrall expressed her exasperation over the never-ending feud rumors.
“People don’t want to believe that we get on. They have too much invested in the idea of two strong, successful women fighting with each other. It makes for juicy gossip and copy,” she said. “The truth of us being friends and getting along and happily doing our jobs together is nowhere near as newsworthy. I think Sarah is fantastic. She is a born leader and she guides the crew and the cast in such a strong but gentle way. She and I are sick of this. It’s exhausting talking about it, and a real bore. Next?”
May 2010: The four ladies posed for Marie Claire ahead of the second film’s premiere, and once again, they addressed the feud rumors.
Parker admitted that sometimes “feelings get hurt” due to how much time they spend filming.
“You’re on set, you’re working 90-hour weeks, you’re never home, you’re exhausted,” she said. “There are times when all of us have been sensitive and sometimes feelings get hurt. But I don’t have any regrets about how I’ve treated people.”
Cattrall also spoke to the “stressful” days on set, telling the mag, “Nineteen-hour workdays are stressful, whether you’re driving a truck, working in a coal mine or on a set and trying to be your brightest at 4 o’clock in the morning. But there’s a camaraderie that happened through all of that..the chemistry among the four of us is very strong.”
Musing on talk of the feud, she reasoned, “because the press has to put women in these boxes, rather than show them as the movie portrays them: working together and being powerful. Things just have to be explosive for no other reason than for people’s imaginations.”
Nixon also weighed in, adding, “It hasn’t always been smooth sailing. But the idea that we’re somehow adversarial is ludicrous.”
August 2016: Parker takes to Instagram to post a message to Cattrall on her 60th birthday. “Sending love and the very best for a perfectly marvelous, joyous, healthy and adventure filled birthday year,” she captioned the pic. “Your ol’ pal, fellow mischief maker and ‘sister’, Sj xxx.”
September 2016: The next month, SJP talked to Time about the response her birthday post received from fans and the media.
“I posted something on Kim’s birthday and people were like, ‘Oh my God, I didn’t know you liked her!'” she said. “What? We were all at liberty to walk away at any time! But nobody asked those questions of shows with men. Isn’t that interesting?”
October 2016: Parker is asked about the feud rumors when she goes on Howard Stern‘s radio show, and brought up society’s tendency to pit women against one another.
“It used to really confound me and really upset me because we were part of a family with Sopranos and no one ever questioned the relationships of the men on that show and no one ever said to them, ‘Did you hang out this weekend with each other? Did you give each other Christmas presents?'” she said. “These were my sisters, these were people that I grew to love and admire.”
She continued, “Was every day perfect? Were people always desperately, hopefully in love with each other? No, but this is a family of people who needed each other, relied upon each other and loved each other. This sort of narrative, this ongoing catfight, it really upset me for a very long time.”
September 2017: SJP confirmed that a third Sex and the City movie had been this close to happening. “It’s over…we’re not doing it,” she told Extra. “I’m disappointed. We had this beautiful, funny, heartbreaking, joyful, very relatable script and story. It’s not just disappointing that we don’t get to tell the story and have that experience, but more so for that audience that has been so vocal in wanting another movie.”
Willie Garson, who played Carrie’s BFF Stan, cryptically tweeted, “Disappointed for all crew holding on for negotiations to conclude for their jobs, and of course, for the fans. Leave it at that.
Reports then cited Cattrall as the lone hold-out, something she was quick to deny on Twitter, shooting down rumors of her alleged demands. “Woke 2 a @MailOnline [poop emoji] storm! The only ‘DEMAND’ I ever made was that I didn’t want to do a 3rd film….& that was back in 2016.”
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October 2017: But Cattrall wasn’t done talking, going on to tell Piers Morgan during an appearance on his ITV show, Life Stories, that Parker “could have been nicer” about the demise of SATC 3.
“And now, now at this very moment it’s quite extraordinary to get any kind of negative press about something that I’ve been saying for almost a year of ‘no’ that I’m demanding or a diva,” Cattrall said, according to The Daily Mail. “And this is really where I take to task the people from Sex and the City and specifically Sarah Jessica Parker in that I think she could have been nicer. I really think she could have been nicer. I don’t know what her issue is, I never have.”
February 2018: Days after Parker expressed her condolences over the passing of Catrall’s brother Christopher Cattrall, the actress took to Instagram and asked her former co-star to save her words.
“My Mom asked me today ‘When will that @sarahjessicaparker, that hypocrite, leave you alone?’ Your continuous reaching out is a painful reminder of how cruel you really were then and now,” Cattrall wrote in her Instagram caption. “Let me make this VERY clear. (If I haven’t already) You are not my family. You are not my friend.”
She added, “So I’m writing to tell you one last time to stop exploiting our tragedy in order to restore your ‘nice girl’ persona.”
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In an interview with People conducted less than 24 hours after Cattrall’s Instagram post, Parker commented on her former co-star’s characterization of the situation.
“I never talked about it, except [to say] that some of us were disappointed [about the movie not happening],” Parker said. “But I never responded to the conversation Kim had with Piers Morgan, where she said things that were really hurtful about me. We had this experience and it was amazing, and nothing will ever be like it. We had a connection with an audience, and we had a connection with the city and with this crew, and we got to tell these crazy stories with each other. So I don’t want to mess with that. I couldn’t imagine anyone else playing that part.”
However, per the magazine, Parker wasn’t planning on responding to Cattrall’s latest message.
April 2018: In an interview with Vulture, Parker argued her side of things, telling the outlet that the tabloid stories about her and Cattrall had simply been blown out of proportion. “I’d just like to remind everybody that there is no catfight,” she said. “I have never uttered an unkind, unsupportive, unfriendly word, so I would love to redefine it.”
According to SJP, she and Cattrall actually got along off camera.
“There were four women on the set and I spent equal time with all of them, so this was not a set with two women who didn’t get along. I’ve always held Kim’s work in high regard and always appreciative of her contributions,” Parker said. “If she chooses not to do the third movie, there’s not a lot I can do to change her mind and we must respect it. That’s the only thing I’ve ever said about it, you know?”
She reiterated: “There is no catfight. There never has been a catfight. I’ve never fought with someone publicly in my life, nor would I. And I spent time with all of the women on the set. People need to recall that it wasn’t just two women on the set fighting because that just never happened.”
October 2018: Despite all of the drama, Parker admitted she couldn’t “imagine” doing another SATC movie without Cattrall.
The comment came when a fan wrote to the star on Instagram, “You are still my hero. Please replace or write her out Kim / Samantha if she is not interested and bring back sex and the city movie #3. The fans need this.” The actress replied, “Not sure if I can imagine doing another movie without her.”
November 2018: Weeks later, a source revealed to E! News what led to the third installment’s demise.
According to the insider, it “was a combination of not great money and a bad storyline for Samantha” that discouraged Cattrall from signing on.
What made the script so bad you may ask? Well, for starters, Samantha’s “main storyline” revolved around her and Miranda’s 14-year-old son Brady. Early in the film, Brady gets caught masturbating. He is also caught sending “dick pics” of his erect penis to Samantha. Awkward.
Plus, Cattrall reportedly also had an issue with the decision to have Carrie’s husband Big (Chris Noth) die, according to Origins host James Andrew Miller. The podcaster claimed this storyline irked Cattrall since the movie would’ve been “more about how Carrie recovers from Big’s death than about the relationship between the four women.”
January 2021: Parker, Nixon and Davis confirmed the beloved series is coming back to life at HBO Max. Not only will it feature a fresh storyline but an entirely new name: And Just Like That… will not see Cattrall returning as Samantha.
“The series will follow Carrie, Miranda and Charlotte as they navigate the journey from the complicated reality of life and friendship in their 30s to the even more complicated reality of life and friendship in their 50s,” a description read. “The 10-episode, half-hour series is scheduled to begin production in New York late spring.”
And when a fan inquired about whether or not the role of Samantha would be recast, Parker responded—sort of—on Instagram.
She simply wrote, “we have some new stories to tell. We are excited.”
But when another commenter claimed Parker and Cattrall “dislike each other,” Parker had more to say.
“No. I don’t dislike her,” she stated. “I’ve never said that. Never would. Samantha isn’t part of this story. But she will always be part of us. No matter where we are or what we do.”
In response to another fan who commented that they “will miss Kim/Samantha,” Parker responded, “We will too. We loved her so.”
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While she didn’t directly acknowledge the project, Cattrall seemed to subtly react when she hit the “like” button on a fan’s Twitter post about her decision not to return.
“I absolutely love Sex and the City and whilst I am saddened that Samantha will not return, I applaud doing what is best for you and think this is great example of putting yourself first,” the tweet, posted on Jan. 11, read. “Well done @KimCattrall.”
June 2021: When And Just Like That… debuted, Samantha’s absence was immediately felt and addressed: She had moved to London and stopped speaking to the women after Carrie informed the legendary publicist she no longer required her services. Still, Carrie reached out to Samantha throughout the first season.
“I feel when someone’s in your heart and in your soul and friendships, how do your friends support you when you’re going through the worst thing that can happen?” showrunner Michael Patrick King explained to Variety of keeping Samantha in the show through text messages. “I found it interesting that Carrie would reach out to Samantha in certain specific times…So I love the idea of the dance—the true love being the reach.”
May 2022: Despite Samantha’s inclusion in the new series, Cattrall said she had no interest in reprising her iconic role.
“It’s a great wisdom to know when enough is enough,” she told Variety. “I also didn’t want to compromise what the show was to me. The way forward seemed clear.”
At the time, Cattrall said she was “never asked to be part of the reboot,” though she noted that she had already made it pretty clear that she had no intention to return after 2010’s Sex and the City 2 movie.
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May 2023: Weeks ahead of the June 22 season two premiere of And Just Like That…, fans were absof–kingloutely shocked when Cattrall’s return as Samantha Jones was confirmed by the show’s official Twitter account. Per Variety, Catrall will only appear in one scene and did not interact with any of her former co-stars or King when she filmed her cameo on March 22.
Though, after season one wrapped with Samantha and Carrie making plans to meet up in Paris, fans will reportedly be treated to a phone conversation between the estranged BFFs.
(Originally published Tuesday, October 3, 2017 at 11:33 a.m. PST)
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