Kim Cattrall's star continues to rise. She attributes her success to saying one word.

Beloved, ballsy and a total babe, Kim Cattrall is certainly a fan favourite across the board. Her regal air, fierce personality and public disdain for doing things she doesn’t want to do has recently made her popularity soar even more. 

Known to most as Sex and the City’s Samantha Jones, Kim Cattrall is more than that, a journeyman actor who earned her stripes on stage and screen well before the hit television show first aired in the late 1990s. 

Born in Liverpool, England, in 1956, she and her family soon immigrated to Canada where she grew up. She moved to New York City at age 16 for her first film role, also studying at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts. 

Upon her graduation Kim signed a five-year film deal with legendary filmmaker, Otto Preminger (the contract was bought out by Universal Studios a year later). She went on to perform in an array of roles, initially more on television, and ultimately more on the big screen - my person favourite being as the protagonist of Mannequin, a camp comedy and cult classic in which a department store mannequin comes to life.

Watch: Watch the trailer for season two of And Just Like That. Post continues after video.

Video via HBO.

In 1997, at age 40, she was approached by Darren Starr to play Samantha Jones in the adaption of Candace Bushnell’s book, Sex and the City. She initially refused the part, speaking about that moment at the Whistler Film Festival in 2014, “It was 1997. So 40 in Hollywood meant you were dead.”


In fact, a month out from filming they had cast another actor to play Samantha, until Darren Starr’s boyfriend called Kim and convinced her to meet Darren for lunch. The rest, as they say, was history.

Kim famously played the maverick character of Samantha with confidence and a refreshing boldness. No character quite like Samantha had been seen in the popular sphere until then. Kim also played the Samantha with a certain empathy and vulnerability - we all remember how her character coped with cancer in season six. 

The franchise went on to make two movies, but at the suggestion of a third film Kim put her foot down and said a resounding no. She’d had enough of playing Samantha and was ready for other projects. This 'no' led to the first public acknowledgement of the feud between her and fellow Sex and the City star and co-producer, Sarah Jessica Parker, which escalated when Kim’s brother passed away in 2018.


Undoubtedly the tension that was revealed between the two actors led Kim to base her speech at the 2022 Variety’s Power of Women dinner, on the power of saying no. She shared that her secret to success was that two letter word, “It’s simple. But at the same time it’s very complicated. It’s a word, and the word is no.” adding “Saying no to your past is saying yes to your future.”

She elaborated on her favourite word, whilst talking about her career, and how she worked her way up the acting ladder, in a 2022 cover feature for Variety magazine saying, “What I’ve tried to do is redefine what 'no' means… I’ve always taken 'nos' as a positive.” 

Since then Sex and the City has rebooted as And Just Like That, an HBO Max series that follows the three other main characters from the original show through their middle age. 

Like it or not, the show just isn't the same without Cattrall in her starring role, despite a whole host of new and interesting characters. 


Cattrall, meanwhile, has been enjoying and embracing another chapter in her career. She currently plays beauty mogul Madolyn Addison in the recent Netflix show, Glamorous. The show mightn’t be a masterpiece but it’s fun, frothy and showcases a genuine set of diverse characters in its stories (not to mention original Sex and the City costume designer, Patricia Field, is responsible for Madolyn’s glamorous series of on-screen looks). Cattrall is also set to star with Robert De Niro in the film About my Father, which will be released in Australia on August 3.


Kim’s personal life is as seemingly aspirational and dramatic as many of her on-screen personas. She has been married three times and has now been with boyfriend Russell Thomas, who is 14 years her junior, for six years. In the past she even briefly dated former Canadian Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau. She also holds two honorary degrees, holds British, Canadian and American citizenship, and is a published author - in 2002 she and ex-husband Mark Levinson co-wrote the book 'Satisfaction: The Art of the Female Orgasm'.

Yet the thing most impressive about her is her drive to evolve in her craft. “As an actor I’ve always wanted to have range… my job is to convey what human is.”

Knowing all of this, fans were surprised (and elated) when it was announced that Kim would return as Samantha, one last time, in the season two season finale of And Just Like That. “It’s very interesting to have the head of HBO call you and ask, What can we do?” - Kim told The View. One of her requests to the HBO boss was Patricia Field dressing her for the scene. The scene was shot in London earlier this year, without Sarah Jessica Parker or Michael Patrick King (the And Just Like That show runner) present. 

As we anticipate her final moment as that favourite character, we can also anticipate much more from this extraordinary woman. Inspired by her I am ready to say no more, though I will never say no to watching Kim Cattrall in her element as an actor.

Feature Image: Getty.


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