'Sex and the City' Moves Sexcapades Into 40s

Orgasms, sex toys and cosmopolitans pour through the lives of Carrie, Miranda, Charlotte and Samantha -- now four 40-somethings who romped through New York City as four 30-somethings in the wildly popular HBO series "Sex and the City."

Now, four years after the Kleenex-ringing last episode, the four bosom buddies -- enthralled with the sexual energy of the most glamorous city in the world -- reunite in a full-length movie set to premiere May 30.

At 43, the film's producer, Emmy-award winning Sarah Jessica Parker, is the symbol of the new middle-age: smart, beautiful and still very relevant. She is the epitome of the refrain "40 is the new 30."

"Look at all the celebs we are fascinated with: There are the Lindsay Lohans and the Britney Spears of the world, but let's be honest, they are not taken as seriously as the people near 40," Marc Malkin, columnist for E! Online, told ABCNEWS.com.

Parker is in good company. Madonna, who turns 50 this year, can still dance in her leotard; Jamie Lee Curtis, at the same age, poses topless for AARP magazine; and Susan Sarandon at 61 still makes lists of Hollywood's sexiest stars.

"Desperate Housewives" actresses Marcia Cross, 46; Terry Hatcher, 43; and Felicity Huffman, 45, all have bodies buffer than 26-year-old Jessica Biel.

Even a Wrinkled Butt

The "Sex and the City" girls -- who have lived on in syndication and DVD -- embody the sexual revolution, pioneering bold themes like abortion, impotence, chlamydia, gay sex and even -- in an episode with the sexually voracious Samantha -- a close-up of the wrinkled butt of a geriatric lover.

But in the upcoming film, the girls are more settled. New Line Films spokesman Michael Clemens confirmed that the girls are "definitely older because the film continues after the series."

Carrie Bradshaw has, at long last, reached "contentment," and is "more serious," according to Parker, who played the serendipitous sex columnist with the to-die-for wardrobe.

In Parker's off-screen life, she is quite an old-fashioned girl, with an 11-year marriage to "Ferris Bueller's" Matthew Broderick, and the mother of 5-year-old Wilkie. She kept a "no nudity" contract with HBO over the six seasons.

The actress -- who got her start as wholesome "Annie" on Broadway -- has paired up with director Michael Patrick King to reunite the show's stars, Kim Cattrall, Cynthia Nixon and Kristin Davis.

And according to some press teasers, there will be some heartbreaks as Carrie continues her longtime relationship with "Mr. Big," who, according to some reports dies.

"When you're 20, you know, your heart is broken at work, in life, in romance," Parker told Rolling Stone's Peter Travers for "Popcorn" on ABC News Now. "You could go to a friend's house in sweat pants or you could hang out at a bar. You could have a meal and you could actually be distracted, and you'd really do fine. Much like a physical injury, you bounce back."

Icons for 20-Somethings

The Manolo-strutting "Sex and the City" girls have become icons not just for gay audiences but for the 20-something crowd, which is expected to flock to theaters in droves.

"I am a total fan, and I think its buzz is so huge and have not heard one bad thing," said E! Online's Malkin.

Women approaching 40 and beyond have proved they, too, can attract younger men, like Samantha and boy toy Jerry "Smith" Jerrod.

Off-screen, Catrall, the 52-year-old actress who plays Samantha, is also the poster child for "cougar" -- with a 28-year-old boyfriend, Canadian chef Alan Wyse. She also wrote the book "Sexual Intelligence."

And then there's Demi Moore, 45, and Ashton Kutcher, 30. Mariah Carey, 38, married actor and rapper Nick Cannon, 27. Their sexual prowess doesn't seem to emasculate their young lovers.

"Frankly, most men are pigs and when they are having more sex and more kinky sex [they] are really happy," said Malkin. "It completely widens the pool and, let's admit it, there are a lot of men who have major hang-ups about sex and [it's a good thing] when women come out of their shell."

Today's middle-aged woman is a far cry from her dowdy and prudish mother.

"Women can be sexual at any age," Sari Locker, sexologist and author of "The Complete Idiot's Guide to Amazing Sex," told ABCNEWS.com.

"With advances today in both plastic surgery and fitness centers everywhere, and even the information about eating healthy out there, not to mention the beauty industry, women are really looking for youth far later in life," she said.

But Locker warned that the 20-somethings who will watch the movie often forget that the characters are in their 40s -- experienced women who "feel comfortable with their sexuality."

"They think they should be having those types of wild sexual romps," according to Locker, who advises younger women who are "fairly new" to sex to save the exploration for later.

"It's healthier to first get in touch with their sexual response and learn to have an orgasm rather than being challenged to have sex with multiple partners in circumstances with questionable motives -- especially Samantha," she said.

Still, said Locker, women in their 40s are more comfortable asking for what they want sexually, and society is much more open about these conversations, something that has been reinforced by "Sex and the City."

"The unmarried single women relate to this show a lot," said Tracie "Slut Machine" Egan, sex editor for Jezebel.com, who said she would "absolutely" go to the film on opening day and "blog about it live."

Many of Jezebel's readers are in their 20s or early 30s and "liberal minded," and most of the blog's editors are "card-carrying feminists."

Good and Bad Role Models

Are the "Sex and the City" girls good role models for the modern woman?

"Yes and no," said Egan. "The girls are taking away the wrong thing about the show: Move to New York and be a freelance writer and have a really nice apartment and a closet full of beautiful clothes and meet a rich guy and go out with the girls for coffee. There is so much more to life than that."

Still, Egan said, the "importance of friendship" is a strong message for young women, as is the openness about sex.

"They are slaves to these bad relations and caught up as slaves to fashion," she said. "They are trying to resolve that with a sense of independence, and a lot of women struggle with that."

Egan said there is no shame in following the escapades of women twice their age.

"I think the only thing that's off-limits is ignoring one's own desires," she said.

The only danger, besides unsafe sex, is "having sex to please anyone other than yourself."

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