Sex And The City author Candace Bushnell discusses her new live show, reboot, and the real Mr. Big
Since the series finale in 2004, Sex and the city Fans have been ravenous for information on the rest of the story involving Carrie Bradshaw and company (including her highly controversial romance with Mr. Big). And while appetites have been sated with two subsequent feature films and an upcoming animated reboot (which will debut in December 2021 on HBO Max), if you really want the scoop on Bradshaw’s trip who better to ask than Candace Bushnell, author of the novel Sex and the city, who inspired the iconic franchise and the real woman behind the character who launched Thousand Manolos.
“I think it’s something that people don’t really understand, it’s how much Sex and the city comes from me and my life and the work I’ve been doing since I came to New York at the age of 19, âthe 62-year-old told TZR. Well, fans of the franchise and the author will be able to better understand the correlation thanks to Bushnell’s latest venture, a one-woman show titled Is there still sex in town? (based on her Test book 2019 of the same name).
Making its debut at the Daryl Roth Theater in Manhattan on November 13, the 12-week solo act is “the story of my life threaded through the way I created Sex and the city, why I created Carrie Bradshaw, and what’s the real story with Mr. Big, âshe says. (It is reported that the inspiration for the show’s main man – played by Chris Noth – was ancient Vogue and GQ editor Ron Galotti.) According to Bushnell, the long-standing roller coaster relationship that unfolded on the show was very different in real life. âYou know Mr. Big was part of my life, but it wasn’t my life,â she explains. “In the TV show, at one point everything revolves around Mr. Big and [ Is There Still Sex in the City?] is to become your own Mr. Big. So it’s much more of a feminist approach.
Bushnell is also honest about his personal take on the dysfunctional saga that has been the Carrie Bradshaw and Mr. Big relationship, which has been fictionalized and dramatized over the six seasons of the series and subsequent films. “It’s a TV show, isn’t it?” And it has its own logic, âexplains the author. “The reason people make decisions on TV are not the reasons people make decisions in real life […] The public is invested in seeing these two characters together. In real life, is this realistic? Probably not. But this is the entertainment, this is my result.
In addition to her hot shots of Mr. Big, Bushnell’s off-Broadway show also includes fun anecdotes and real sex experiences from her early years in New York City. âThere are funny parts, sad parts,â she says. âI think one of the saddest parts is the real break up with Mr. Big. We’re talking about my real Charlotte, Samantha and Miranda. This is really the story of my life intertwined with how I created Sex and the city. “
In planning the account of this trip, Bushnell drew on some self-reflection on his own relationship with the SATC an iconic woman and was honest about her own personal experiences outside of Bradshaw’s frame: âIt’s about coming out of behind these characters and being yourself. It is also about this surprisingly circular movement of life. We feel like life is just a trajectory, an arrow going in one direction, but it isn’t. “
And while the fictional Carrie Bradshaw was last seen embracing married life (and all of its complications), Bushnell’s aforementioned ‘circular motion’ led her to re-explore the concept of dating, which she also addresses in the book version of Is there still sex and the city? “This book was really about being over 50, friendship, dating and this new landscape,” she explains. âSo there are different types of people that you are going to meet and there is the Internet. I think online dating has certainly changed things a lot. Pornography has made a big difference. For me, if I’m dating someone, it’s probably going to be a bit old-fashioned.
This new landscape and the current social climate will probably also be addressed in the new Sex and the city reboot, which places Bradshaw and the gang (minus Samantha Jones) in a very different climate and age category than when audiences last saw them in 2010. And although Bushnell was not involved in the project , she is convinced that it will be very entertaining and a treat for die-hard fans. âI think people always find the characters fascinating and their stories interesting,â Bushnell says. âI think we all have these questions about relationships and sex. I mean these are the two things just about everyone has to navigate in one form or another.
As to whether she’s still linked to alter ego Carrie Bradshaw, Bushnell is decidedly on the fence. âI think in a way I connect with the character,â she says. âBut I think these characters took their own lives. I mean, I say they’re like the characters in the Star Wars franchise [in that] they have kind of become larger than life.