The actress also says the rift is not a "catfight," adding, "There has been one person talking."

After years of speculation, Sarah Jessica Parker is setting the record straight on her very public rift with her former Sex and the City costar Kim Cattrall.

The actress has opened up with her side of the story, explaining in depth for the first time what really happened between the two actresses that led to their fallout — and the real reason why Cattrall wasn't asked to be a part of the HBO Max revival And Just Like That, which featured almost every series regular from the original show.

"We did not ask her to be part of this because she made it clear that that wasn't something she wanted to pursue, and it no longer felt comfortable for us, and so it didn't occur to us," Parker explained in a new interview on The Hollywood Reporter's Award Chatter podcast. "That's not 'slamming' her, it's just learning. You've got to listen to somebody, and if they're publicly talking about something and it doesn't suggest it's some place they want to be, or a person they want to play, or an environment in which they want to be, you get to an age where you're like, 'Well, we hear that.'"

Kim Cattrall and Sarah Jessica Parker in 'Sex and the City'
| Credit: Everett Collection

And Just Like That dealt with the glaring absence of Cattrall's character Samantha by attributing it to a falling-out Carrie (Parker) had with her friend after she told her that she no longer needed her to be her publicist, after which Samantha moved to London.

"We felt comfortable moving on without her and without that part because we knew what Michael [Patrick King] wanted to do," Parker said of the storytelling choice. "And we thought he handled it beautifully — that she was there and she was present — and that was kind of nice for all of us and, I think, the audience."

In an interview with EW, King clarified that an And Just Like That scene in which Carrie and Miranda (Cynthia Nixon) discuss missing Samantha was not his way of leaving the door open for Cattrall's return. "It's Carrie and Miranda talking about their friendship, and how strange it is that they're not together forever. It's not a tease saying Kim Cattrall's coming back," he said. "Samantha lives in London. Carrie, Miranda, Charlotte, and Samantha have had a little bit of a split. So really what it is, and why it resonates, is because everybody believes those friendships were forever. The audience believed those friendships were forever, and so did the main characters. We're trying to mirror that feeling, but it's not an invite. It's a story point."

Last month, Cattrall shared her side of the story, saying she wasn't asked to participate in And Just Like That and that she had "made her feelings clear" after the third movie — something that tracks with Parker's explanation, as the actress elaborated that the conflict between Cattrall and her castmates began back in 2017, when discussions about a third Sex and the City film were taking place.

Sarah Jessica Parker, Kirstin Davis, and Kim Cattrall in 'Sex and the City'
| Credit: Everett Collection

"The studio, when we were going to do the third movie, there were things that she requested that they were not able to do. They didn't feel comfortable meeting where she wanted to meet," Parker said. "And so we didn't do the movie because we didn't want to do it without Kim, and the studio wasn't going to do it, so it fell apart."

While the cast was disappointed, Parker explained that they didn't approach Cattrall with malice, despite the fact that Cattrall publicly spoke about Parker's past ill treatment towards her while they were on set — which Parker says wasn't her experience.

"It's so painful for people to keep talking about this 'catfight' — a fight, a fight, a fight. I've never uttered fighting words in my life about anybody that I've worked with ever," Parker said. "There has been no public dispute or spat or conversations or allegations made by me or anybody on my behalf. I wouldn't do it. That is not the way I would have it. So I just wish that they would stop calling this a 'catfight' or an 'argument,' because it doesn't reflect [reality]. There has been one person talking. And I'm not going to tell her not to, or anybody, so that's been kind of painful for me also."

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