If you’re as Sex and the City–obsessed as we are, you know there’s one woman responsible for making it the sensation it is: novelist and creator of the hit series, Candace Bushnell. The iconic author is performing Out East at Front Row at Canoe Place Inn in Hampton Bays on August 17th.
Candace, when you originally created Sex and the City (SATC), did you ever think it would become as huge a sensation as it did?
As a child, I always felt I had a purpose in life that would somehow be related to women and breaking through the barriers of the patriarchy, which is something that I did even back when I was a little girl. So, the short answer is yes, but I didn’t know what it would be. And honestly, I’m still not 100 percent sure.
Tell us about your one-woman show, True Tales of Sex, Success and Sex and the City.
It’s exactly what it says it is: an origin story on how I created Sex and the City, how hard I worked to get there, why I invented Carrie Bradshaw, and what happened to me afterward, combined with my life story—my aspirations as a writer, how I came to New York, my struggles and how I eventually became successful. And, of course, there’s the sex.
Why did you decide to bring your show, which got such amazing praise when it played in NYC, to the Hamptons?
I wrote it during COVID and developed it at the legendary Buck’s County Playhouse in New Hope, Pennsylvania, and then brought it to off-Broadway at the Daryl Roth theater in New York City. Now I’ve done it at various regional theaters and twice at Café Carlyle in the Carlyle Hotel in the city. When I was performing the show at Café Carlyle the owner of the Canoe Place Inn saw the show and loved it enough to ask me to perform there this summer. I visited the Canoe Place Inn and loved it. It has a great bar and restaurant, plus it’s one of the oldest inns in America. Apparently Frank Sinatra performed there in the ’60s. If you get a chance to perform in the same venue Frank Sinatra did, you absolutely say yes. I’m so excited!
What can fans expect at your Hamptons show?
Hopefully a lot of laughs. We play a game called Real or Not Real, using video clips from the show and comparing it to my real life, because so much of what happened on the TV show was just a bit better or a little bit worse and fans have to guess what’s real and what isn’t.
Who from the SATC cast do you still keep in touch with?
I’m in touch with Kim Cattrall and tend to run into Cynthia Nixon every now and again. The last time was on the street in front of my apartment building next to the Apple Store where she was directing an episode of And Just Like That…. I love when something like that happens. I put up a photo on Instagram even though neither of us is wearing any makeup and it’s eight in the morning.
What are your thoughts on Season 2 of And Just Like That… so far?
I’m really enjoying it. I’ve said this before, TV shows have their own logic and And Just Like That… is finding and defining its world. It’s entertaining and people like to talk about it.
Who is your favorite character from the new series?
Even though everyone “hates” Che Diaz, I love Che because they express that side of humanity that no one wants to admit to. Online people were so upset that Che didn’t “get it” when Miranda said she was leaving to see her son, but the reality is that not everyone is obsessed with children, and it’s refreshing to see a character who reflects that.
You’ve talked about being happy and surprised that Samantha Jones is coming back this season, that there was a piece missing. Why do you think it was so important to the fans for her to return?
I hear this from the fans of the original SATC; they want that feeling that they had when they were watching the original show. Plus, I love Kim doing the Netflix show Glamorous and appearing in the reboot. As a sixty-something woman, I relish seeing another sixty-something woman on the screen in two shows.
How is the Hamptons inspiring to your writing process?
For the past 30 years, I’ve pretty much only lived in Manhattan and the Hamptons. I write about the society that I live in, so I always write about my environment. In SATC the book, the Hamptons is featured as a stomping ground for Carrie and Mr. Big. They have lots of adventures here, south of the Highway. The Hamptons are also huge in Four Blondes, Trading Up and my latest book, Is There Still Sex in the City? It’s one of the “true tales” I tell in my show: the real story of the real Mr. Big.
What has been your proudest career moment?
Having a No. 1 best-selling novel, The Carrie Diaries. Actually, getting on the best-seller list. Getting Lipstick Jungle on the air on NBC. Getting the column Sex and the City.
What would fans be surprised to learn about you?
How incredibly hard I’ve worked; how I came to New York wanting to win the Pulitzer Prize; and the hard moments, the dark times that no one likes to talk about.
Would you ever consider being a Real Housewives of NY star?
I know so many of the RHONYs in real life! I love them and I hang out with them sometimes, and it’s always an adventure. They’re all interesting and super cool. But being on an actual reality show is very different than being with your friends in real life who happen to be on RHONY. On the set, there are tons of producers around, telling people what to do. And I usually get yelled at. On the other hand, if you’re on a reality show you get to go on yachts and to St. Barts, whereas in real life that pretty much never happens to me.
You’ve accomplished so much. Is there anything still on your career bucket list?
Yes, I’d like to make a lot more money so I can rent a yacht for a week and bring all my friends. Just like on a reality show!
For more information and to buy tickets, visit eventbrite.com/e/true-tales-of-sex-success-and-sex-in-the-city-tickets-663189807567.