Is Kim Cattrall’s Feud with Her Former ‘Sex and the City’ Co-Star, Sarah Jessica Parker, All About Money?

Sarah Jessica Parker and Kim Cattrall may have portrayed best friends for six years on Sex and the City, but the two actors are certainly not friends in real life. In fact, their feud is almost as epic and talked about as the provocative series they starred in. Rumors of friction on the set began swirling back in 2004 and followed the cast as they filmed two separate movies based on the show. The success of the franchise is almost overshadowed by the feud between Cattrall and Parker. The rivalry, however, appears to be entirely one-sided, and, over the years, Cattrall has been painted as bitter and jealous of Parker’s paychecks, despite her insistence that her issue has nothing to do with money.

Rumors have been swirling since 2004 that not all was well between Parker and Cattrall

When Sex and the City wrapped its final episode in 2004, rumors that Parker and Cattrall could not get along had quietly made their way through the show’s fan base, those rumors turned into fact when Cattrall aired out the show’s dirty laundry in an interview. During an appearance, Cattrall admitted she walked away from the show after six seasons because she was not offered the money she wanted.

Sarah Jessica Parker as Carrie Bradshaw and Kim Cattrall as Samantha Jones
Sarah Jessica Parker as Carrie Bradshaw and Kim Cattrall as Samantha Jones | Tom Kingston/WireImage

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Since then, she’s taken direct aim at Parker. She’s recounted moments she felt were snubs and has been pretty vocal about her desire for Parker to leave her alone. Cynthia Nixon and Kristen Davis, who portrayed Miranda Hobbes and Charlotte York, respectively, have been largely left alone by Cattrall, even though she claims they took part in the “toxic culture,” too.  

Sarah Jessica Parker made significantly more than her co-stars

Michael Patrick King, the executive producer of Sex and the City, spoke about the feud between Cattrall and Parker in-depth on Origins, a podcast dedicated to exploring cultural success stories. King alleged that Cattrall always had an issue with the fact that Parker was paid more than her co-stars. Parker was largely considered the lead, and the member of the cast with the most pull. King explained that, while Cattrall was a movie star before signing onto the series, she was not at the height of her career. Nixon and Davis were also paid less than Parker. King noted that Nixon was known for her stage work, and Davis was a relative newcomer when they signed onto the project. He said that their contracts reflected their status within the industry. The setup seemed to work for Davis, Nixon, and Parker, but earning less made Cattrall feel put out.

Kim Cattrall, Sarah Jessica Parker, Cynthia Nixon, and Kristin Davis
Kim Cattrall, Sarah Jessica Parker, Cynthia Nixon, and Kristin Davis | HBO/Getty Images

So, how much more did Parker earn than her three on-screen pals? For her time on Sex and the City, Parker earned $1.5 million per episode by the end of the show’s sixth season, according to The Telegraph. The hefty paycheck was partly thanks to her role as an executive producer on the series. The other actors’ pay per episode is unknown, but Nixon, for example, reportedly netted $6 million for her role in the 2008 film, Sex and the City: The Movie. Cattrall is said to have garnered $10 million for the film, while Parker took home $15 million for playing Carrie, once again. Davis, like Nixon, is believed to have earned $6 million when all was said and done.

Is Kim Cattrall’s distaste for Sarah Jessica Parker all about money?

Cattrall was largely villainized in the press and by her co-stars for being vehemently opposed to another Sex and the City movie. After news broke that a third installment of the film franchise had been scrapped, rumors about Cattrall’s salary demands ran rampant across the internet. Cattrall spat back on Twitter, insisting that the only request she ever made was to be left out of any future Sex and the City projects. Several people close to the project insist that was not the case, and that Cattrall had actively negotiated a contract until the very end. Cattrall’s issues with her financial take from the project didn’t start with the movies, though.

Sarah Jessica Parker, Cynthia Nixon, Kristen Davis and Kim Cattrall arrive at The UK Premiere of 'Sex And The City 2'
Sarah Jessica Parker, Cynthia Nixon, Kristen Davis, and Kim Cattrall | Claire R Greenway/Getty Images

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As King said, she took issue with her lower pay pretty early on in the season, although Cattrall insists a “toxic” culture is the reason she has no desire to revisit the iconic role. In the years since the feud was made public, Cattrall has stuck to a narrative that paints Parker as a “mean girl” who actively created a clique with Nixon and Davis. Parker, for her part, has been mostly non-committal about the feud, explains Vanity Fair. One important fact remains, though; Cattrall claims the entire environment was toxic, but she hasn’t had terrible things to say about Nixon nor Davis. Her distaste seems to be with Parker specifically. Parker, coincidentally enough, is the only actor who made more money than her for the series.