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'Sex and the City' Prequel 'The Carrie Diaries' a Go at the CW

The young-skewing network is giving a green light to a project based on Candace Bushnell's books with "Gossip Girl's" Josh Schwartz and Stephanie Savage on board to produce. Former "SATC" scribe Amy B. Harris would likely adapt the series and serve as showrunner.

Stephanie Savage and Josh Schwartz
Scott Wintrow/Getty Images
Stephanie Savage and Josh Schwartz

The rumored Sex and the City prequel is a go at the CW.

After hearing the pitch Friday, sources tell The Hollywood Reporter that the young-skewing network is moving forward with the project based on The Carrie Diaries, the book series written by Sex and the City author Candace Bushnell that follows Carrie Bradshaw during her senior year of high school in the early 1980s.

The project hails from Warner Bros. Television and Josh Schwartz and Stephanie Savage’s Fake Empire, with former Sex and the City scribe/co-producer Amy B. Harris attached to adapt and serve as showrunner. Fake Empire's Len Goldstein also is attached as an executive producer.

The first book in Bushnell’s origin story was published last year and, like Sex and the City, is told from Carrie’s point of view. It follows the aspiring writer through her relationship with Sebastian Kydd and rivalry with popular girl Donna LaDonna.

The second novel in the series, Summer and the City: A Carrie Diaries Book, was published in April and revolves around Carrie’s first trip to New York. Both books have been big sellers, with Bushnell signing on this summer to pen two additional young adult novels.

Bushnell would likely carry an executive producer credit on the project.

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HBO owns the rights to the series, with corporate cousin the CW hearing the pitch Friday and commiting to the project immediately afterward. If it goes to series, the project would fit into a CW lineup that already includes such young- and female-skewing fare as The Vampire Diaries, Gossip Girl and 90210.

A Carrie Diaries adaptation would mark the second project based on Bushnell’s books this development season.

ABC is adapting the scribe’s 2008 book One Fifth Avenue, with Gossip Girl producer Josh Safran attached to pen the project. Bushnell and Grey’s Anatomy’s Mark Gordon will produce One Fifth, which is being described as Sex and the City meets The Good Wife.

Michael Patrick King, who produced the long-running HBO comedy, told reporters last month that he was “not working on any Sex and the City prequel” and that he wasn’t interested in seeing the franchise move in that direction.

STORY: Michael Patrick King Says He Has ‘No Connection’ to ‘Sex and the City’ Prequel

“My Carrie Bradshaw started at 33, and I took her to 43. I didn't even want to know who Carrie Bradshaw's parents were because I thought she only existed in Manhattan," he said at the Television Critics Association’s summer press tour in Beverly Hills.

"So for me, the idea of going backwards and making her less evolved ... is something that I don't imagine doing," he added.

Schwartz and Savage, both repped by WME, are heading into their own block of programming on the CW this fall with Gossip Girl and freshman drama Hart of Dixie set to air back-to-back on Mondays starting Sept. 26. Harris, whose credits also include The Comeback, is repped by CAA.

Email: Lesley.Goldberg@thr.com; Twitter: @Snoodit

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