Inside the toxic decade-long feud between Sex And The City stars Sarah Jessica Parker and Kim Cattrall
SHOWBIZ feuds are one thing, but the raw cry of hatred directed at Sarah Jessica Parker by her former co-star Kim Cattrall was something else.
“I don’t need your love or support at this tragic time,” Kim wrote on Instagram this weekend after her Sex And The City castmate posted “love and condolences” over the death of her brother.
“You are not my family. You are not my friend. Your continuous reaching out is a painful reminder of how cruel you really were then and now.
“So I’m writing to tell you one last time to stop exploiting our tragedy in order to restore your ‘nice girl’ persona.”
Despite simmering tensions between the actresses being plain for years – with things coming to a head with the canning of the third movie late last year.
The main flashpoint has been money, but the lowest point came when Kim claimed at a script meeting that another of the show’s stars, Cynthia Nixon, had suffered a miscarriage.
A post shared by Kim Cattrall (@kimcattrall)
A show source said: “From that moment, the girls froze her out. They wouldn’t even sit with her at mealtimes.”
So when exactly did the pair fall out, and what caused the friendship to turn poisonous? According to those in the know, the problems started at the very beginning…
Stars in their eyes
SATC was an instant hit when it debuted in the States in 1998 – making Carrie, Samantha, Miranda and Charlotte huge stars around the world.
Kim, who played man-eater Samantha, was arguably the biggest name at the time.
But Carrie, played by Sarah, was supposed to be the series' star – and tensions are said to have started brewing.
Clifford Streit, the real-life inspiration for the show’s character Stanford Blatch, claimed in a 2008 book proposal that tensions started because Kim was “a natural comedienne, and a scene-stealer in the best possible sense — the camera went right to her.”
Sarah and Cynthia Nixon (Miranda) had known each other from their Broadway days, and quickly formed a close friendship, with Kristin Davis (Charlotte) later being brought into the clique, according to Page Six.
And the relationship continued to deteriorate behind the scenes.
When the group filmed in Atlantic City, New Jersey, during the fifth series in 2002, Page Six reported that “Sarah Jessica rented a house for herself, Kristin Davis and Cynthia Nixon.
“Kim was left out on her own.”
But an HBO spokesman was quick to claim that Kim stayed in a different house at the time so that her then-husband, Mark Levinson, could stay with her.
By the time the TV show ended, Page Six say their reporters were receiving tips about on-set tensions on a near-weekly basis.
One source told the paper that no one would talk to Kim, "not even in the make-up room".
The world got another inkling that Kim was unhappy came when she told Jonathan Ross that she had demanded more money for her part, when appearing on his self-titled chat show in 2004.
"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.
"When they didn't seem keen on that I thought it was time to move on."
Kim said she had asked to be paid £720,000 per episode, up from a reported £253,000. Sarah, as executive producer, was paid more.
When Kim signed up for the first movie, in 2007, a friend supposedly told the Daily News: “Kim does not want to… do the film.
“She feels she has been treated horribly by Sarah Jessica Parker for six years.”
The movie was eventually released in May 2008 – after filming was delayed over Kim's calls for more money.
Sarah defended Kim at the time, telling The Telegraph: "She mentioned money and no one should vilify her for it."
In December 2009, Sarah appeared on the cover of Elle magazine – and was asked about the feud.
She said: "I don't think anybody wants to believe that I love Kim. I adore her. I wouldn't have done the movie without her. Didn't and wouldn't."
Kim echoed these words in an interview with Daily Mail a month later, saying: "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 cop."
She added: "I think Sarah is fantastic."
The movie was a hit and a second film seemed inevitable – but not before Kim had demanded, and received, another pay rise.
They began filming but, according to a 2009 article in New York magazine: “Sarah Jessica Parker and Kim Cattrall are no longer speaking, which is making everyone on the set of the new Sex And The City movie uncomfortable.”
'What cat fight?'
Speaking to Marie Claire, ahead of the film's May 2010 premiere, Sarah admitted that sometimes "feelings get hurt" on set – but added: "I don't have any regrets about how I've treated people."
In August 2016, Sarah posted a touching Instagram post on Kim's 60th birthday – which thoroughly confused everyone who thought the pair hated each other.
She wrote: "Happy birthday you beauty @kimcattrall. Sending love and the very best for a perfectly marvelous, joyous, healthy and adventure filled birthday year.
"Your ol' pal, fellow mischief maker and "sister", Sj xxx".
A post shared by SJP (@sarahjessicaparker)
In October, she was questioned about the post on Howard Stern's radio show, and said of her co-stars: "These were my sisters, these were people that I grew to love and admire."
Sarah added: "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 cat fight, it really upset me for a very long time."
The final chapter
In September 2017, Sarah firmly squashed fan hopes of a third movie, but refused to point any fingers.
She simply said: “I’m disappointed. We had this beautiful, funny, heartbreaking, joyful, very relatable script.”
But an anonymous story, posted in the Mail the same day, suggested the blame lied with Kim's diva demands.
Kim was quick to reply, tweeting: "The only DEMAND I ever made was that I didn’t want to do a 3rd film….& that was back in 2016.”
According to the Mail Online, she later said described her relationship with the SATC cast as "toxic".
She also made a groundbreaking move – and was unusually vocal about her feelings on Piers Morgan's Life Stories.
When asked about Sarah, Kim said: "I really think she could have been nicer. I don't know what her issue is."
She added of her three co-stars: "We've never been friends. We've been colleagues."
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A source later told The Sun that Kim had vowed to never work with Sarah again.
“Kim felt Sarah thought she was more important than the others," the insider added.
“She couldn’t take the negativity between them.”
With plans for a third movie firmly off the table, you may have thought their differences would be left in the past.
But today's development proves that tensions are still running very high between the pair.
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