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Sex And The City star Mario Cantone on moment Willie Garson shared cancer news

Mario Cantone (Yui Mok/PA)
Mario Cantone (Yui Mok/PA)

Sex And The City star Mario Cantone has said he and his on-screen husband Willie Garson both broke down in tears as Garson told him he had terminal cancer.

The actor was a fan favourite on the series for his portrayal of flamboyant talent agent Stanford Blatch, a close friend of Sarah Jessica Parker’s Carrie Bradshaw.

He died aged 57 in September, during production of spin-off series And Just Like That.

The 92nd Academy Awards – Elton John AIDS Foundation Viewing Party – Los Angeles
Willie Garson died last year (PA)

His character appears in early episodes of the new show, before he unexpectedly moves to Tokyo.

Cantone, who plays Stanford’s one-time rival-turned-husband Anthony Marentino, told US magazine People: “I had no idea until he told me.

“I thought he was kidding.

“And then he turned his head and I saw his look and I went, and then I sat down next to him.

“We both cried and it was horrible.”

Addressing the way the character was written out of the show as a result of Garson’s death, Cantone said he thought Garson’s absence was handled “very well”.

He added: “I love that scene (where Anthony tells Carrie about Stanford leaving),” he says. “I think it’s beautifully written.”

The Sex And The City spin-off And Just Like That featured the return of Parker, Cynthia Nixon and Kristin Davis in their roles but absent was Kim Cattrall, who played Samantha Jones.

The show, which came to a conclusion this week, has divided fans, with the new character comedian Che Diaz, played by Sara Ramirez, proving to be particularly controversial.

However, Cantone said cast members are keen to return for a second outing.

He said: “I think we all want to do it. I hope so. We had a great time this season.”

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