Candace Bushnell Wanted Carrie Bradshaw To End Up Single, Career-Driven And In Politics
11:15 am, March 27th | by Meredith Lepore
Candace Bushnell, creator of the Sex & the City empire, recently spoke with The Daily Beast about the new show based on her book series, The Carrie Diaries, which is struggling a bit in the ratings. In addition to defending the show, which many devoted S&TC fans don’t like because they feel it strays from the character of grownup Carrie Bradshaw, Bushnell sounded off a bit on the grownup Carrie Bradshaw and her film sequels. She had a very different picture in her head for what she wanted Carrie to end up with in the movies.
From The Daily Beast:
Do you think there’s going to be a third Sex and the City movie?
No. Look, Sarah Jessica Parker is 47. I think with the second movie, Carrie Bradshaw couldn’t be an ingenue anymore. But I think they were stuck doing what the audience wanted. Realistically, a middle-aged woman who was married without children would be much more focused on her career and less focused on this Mr. Big: “Does he love me?” … “Does he still not love me?” I mean, I think it was coming to the end of what they could do with the character.
It wasn’t the best idea to make them leave New York.
If it were up to me, the second movie would have been Carrie Bradshaw decides to run for mayor and Samantha helps her. It would get into some real issues of what happens when you’re part of a relationship and the woman is ambitious. What does that do to her relationship with Mr. Big? To me, that would be interesting. But they were not going to go there.
Well, at least she agrees that whole “sending them off to Abu Dhabi” plotline was ridiculous. Those girls cannot thrive unless they are in Manhattan! But it is very interesting that she is criticizing the fairytale ending Carrie got in the films (especially the second one). Candace envisioned much more of a career-focused Carrie, except it seems like she would only end up embracing her career because she couldn’t get the guy, which is a little sad.
I do like that Candace wanted to make the series more about women’s career paths and the stereotypes they are measured against. She told The Daily Beast that she thinks S&TC resonated with so many women because,
“It tapped into this idea of single women in their 30s. In the 1990s there was an explosion of single women. These were women who had come to the city in the 1980s, as part of “the working girl.” The ’80s was all about this idea that women could have it all. You could have a career, and you could have a husband, and you could have children. Then all of a sudden, you had the 1990s, you had all these women in their 30s who had the careers but had not managed to find a husband, and they were single. And there really was no model for how to live your life and even what this life was. It was a lifestyle where women were very reliant on girlfriends, and it was this idea that when you come to the city, you make a new family. That’s what Sex and the City was really about. And now, as time goes on, the idea of women delaying marriage, having careers, has become in a sense mainstream. So for young women, it’s a passage in their life that they relate to.”
We got to see that women in their 30s who weren’t settling down didn’t hate children or were extremely selfish (though Carrie had her moments) — they were just focused on different things. Sex & the City showed that these women weren’t freaks, they were just different, and that was okay. And they had fabulous shoes.