My sep­a­rate lives

TV Times - - Interview - Jane Mulk­er­rins

NEW Sex and the City star Sarah Jessica parker on her re­turn to TV to play a wannabe di­vorcee

Com­edy welve years af­ter she said good­bye to Car­rie Brad­shaw in Sex and the City, Sarah Jessica Parker re­turns to TV for more emo­tional tur­moil in Sky At­lantic’s Divorce.

The 10-parter fea­tures Sarah as Frances, an ex­ec­u­tive head­hunter who lives in a pic­turesque sub­urb out­side New York with her hus­band, Robert (Thomas Haden Church), and their two chil­dren.

Frances is se­cretly hav­ing an af­fair, and fol­low­ing a dra­matic in­ci­dent at a friend’s birth­day party, she de­cides to ask for a divorce – only to find a clean break isn’t as easy as she’d thought.

Here, Sarah, 51, tells us more about what’s in store...

TIt’s quite a dark com­edy, isn’t it? The show is a half-hour com­edy, but the com­edy comes from the ridicu­lous be­hav­iour of smart peo­ple do­ing stupid things,

and be­ing cruel and self­ish. What was it about the se­ries that drew you back to tele­vi­sion af­ter so many years? I’d been de­vel­op­ing this show for about four years. There wasn’t a script, specif­i­cally – there was just a story I was want­ing to tell: the story of a mar­riage and an af­fair. I think the show will ad­dress the hopes, dreams and dis­ap­point­ments of a par­tic­u­lar gen­er­a­tion of peo­ple.

Why did you ask Sharon Hor­gan (cre­ator and star of C4 hit Catas­tro­phe and BBC sit­com Pulling) to write the script?

I thought she would suit the tone the se­ries needed – the se­ri­ous­ness and sad­ness but also hu­mour in her writ­ing. I was look­ing for some­thing that sat in a world be­tween com­edy and drama.

Are Frances and Robert re­ally vic­tims of circumstances beyond their con­trol?

Well, the col­lapse of the US econ­omy in 2008 plays a role – it’s one of the rea­sons for Robert’s pro­fes­sional demise, and why Frances, like so many women, has be­come the per­son who’s sup­port­ing the fam­ily and giv­ing up her own dreams in the process.

How is Frances dif­fer­ent from Car­rie Brad­shaw?

Her circumstances are so real and recog­nis­able and re­lat­able in a dif­fer­ent way from Car­rie Brad­shaw. Ba­si­cally, ev­ery choice Frances made has been re­ally, re­ally dif­fer­ent: her re­la­tion­ship with men, with chil­dren, with friend­ships, with the city… It all feels so dif­fer­ent for me as an ac­tor.

Are you wor­ried that

Frances’ af­fair might make view­ers dis­like her?

Some peo­ple have asked me, ‘Aren’t you wor­ried she’s not like­able?’ But Tony So­prano was a mur­derer, and we loved him. You can like some­body even if they make poor choices. And I ac­tu­ally think Frances and Robert are equally un­like­able. I think Robert is dear and earnest, but then he says to her, ‘I’m go­ing to make sure your chil­dren hate you,’ which is just dis­grace­ful.

IS PRE­VIEWED on PAGES 58-59 Bri­tish-cana­dian Kim,

60, who played PR ex­ec­u­tive Sa­man­tha Jones, has ap­peared in sev­eral plays in Bri­tish the­atres, writ­ten books on fe­male sex­u­al­ity, starred in C4’s Any Hu­man Heart and ITV’S My Boy Jack, and the Cana­dian ver­sion of the sit­com Sensitive Skin. Cynthia, 50, who played lawyer miranda Hobbes, has won an emmy, Grammy and

Tony in her years since

Sex and the City. She’s about to be seen as Nancy Rea­gan in the TV movie Killing Rea­gan. Since play­ing former art dealer Char­lotte Goldenblatt, Kristin,

51, has starred in

2006 film Deck the

Halls, ad­ver­tised sham­poo, been a judge on Project Run­way and made her West end de­but in Fatal At­trac­tion.

Divorce tues­day / sky At­lantic / 10.10Pm

Robert and Frances are as bad as each other, says Sarah

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