When we heard there was going to be a "Sex and the City" prequel TV show, we were skeptical: would there be a mini Carrie tottering around Manhattan in mini Manolos with a mini Miranda, Samantha and Charlotte by her side? Would it simply be a poor man's version of the original series with fewer cosmos and orgasms?
No way, say the creators. Candace Bushnell and Amy B. Harris, the executive producers of the CW's new series "The Carrie Diaries," premiered the pilot of their new show to a crowd of bona fide "Sex and the City" fans on Monday evening at New York's School of Visual Arts as part of the New York Television Festival -- a critical audience for the new prequel if there ever was one. But both Bushnell, creator of "Sex and the City," and Harris, a writer and producer on "SATC" as well, assured the audience that young Carrie would have her own identity... while maintaining elements of the adult Carrie we know and love.
"We didn't want to do the Baby Muppets syndrome -- 'Oh it's baby Samantha! It's baby Miranda!'" said Harris, speaking on a panel after the pilot episode was shown. Instead the pilot centers on young Carrie (played by AnnaSophia Robb) and a whole new cast of characters, including two BFFs named Maggie and Mouse, a male friend Walt and a love interest named Sebastian (no, not Mr. Little, as we had hoped). And while Manhattan plays an important role even in episode 1, Carrie resides in suburban Connecticut circa 1984 with nary a brownstone nor taxi in sight.
Diehard "Sex and the City" lovers will still note many comparisons, specifically in the fashion created by "Gossip Girl" costume designer Eric Daman. (Daman also worked on "SATC" as Patricia Fields' assistant for three seasons.) Said Harris at the premiere, "We planted fun 'Easter eggs' for our audience," little similarities that "SATC" fans could hunt for as "The Carrie Diaries" progressed.
Daman is responsible for many of them, including young Carrie's "C" necklace (a subtle nod to the nameplate necklace Sarah Jessica Parker wore on "SATC"). "I know that there are a lot of women -- a lot of people around the world -- who hold Carrie Bradshaw as this fashion icon," Daman told us at the premiere. "So to be able to go back in time and pre-design who she is and lay the DNA of where she is going is very important." That can be accomplished through a necklace, a purse or even crinolines that hint at Carrie Bradshaw's famous tutu.
As for more "SATC" similarities in "The Carrie Diaries"? We'll have to wait until January when the series debuts to find more. But Bushnell and Harris did tease one detail: an upcoming episode features a fashion shoot... with camels.
And no, it doesn't take place in Abu Dhabi.
Check out the extended trailer of "The Carrie Diaries" below! Will you watch?
Relive the fashion: