Barbie and Ken are having the time of their lives in the colorful and seemingly perfect world of Barbie Land. However, when they get a chance to go to the real world, they soon discover the joys and perils of living among humans.
“Barbie,” a 2023 American fantasy comedy film directed by Greta Gerwig and co-written with Noah Baumbach, brings the iconic fashion doll to life in her first-ever live-action adventure. Based on the beloved Mattel dolls, the film stars Margot Robbie as Barbie and Ryan Gosling as Ken, taking audiences on an entertaining journey of self-discovery amid existential crises. With a stellar supporting cast featuring America Ferrera, Kate McKinnon, Issa Rae, Rhea Perlman, and Will Ferrell, “Barbie” offers a delightful blend of fantasy and comedy.
A Decades-Long Journey:
The concept of a live-action Barbie film first emerged in September 2009 under Universal Pictures, with Laurence Mark taking the helm as producer. Development picked up pace in April 2014 when Sony Pictures secured the film rights. The project witnessed various shifts in writers and directors, including the initial casting of Amy Schumer and later Anne Hathaway as Barbie. In a significant turn of events, the film’s rights were transferred to Warner Bros. Pictures in October 2018. Margot Robbie joined the cast in 2019 after Gal Gadot had to step aside due to scheduling conflicts. In 2020, Greta Gerwig was announced as the director and co-writer alongside Noah Baumbach. The remaining star-studded ensemble cast was unveiled in early 2022.
Behind the Scenes:
Principal photography for “Barbie” took place primarily at Warner Bros. Studios, Leavesden, in England, and the iconic Venice Beach Skatepark in Los Angeles from March to July in 2022. Gerwig’s creative direction and the chemistry between Robbie and Gosling added depth and charm to the film.
Premiere and Success:
“Barbie” made its grand debut at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles on July 9, 2023, captivating audiences with its fresh take on the iconic character. The film was officially released in the United States on July 21 by Warner Bros. Pictures. The release strategy, in conjunction with Universal’s “Oppenheimer,” sparked the “Barbenheimer” cultural phenomenon, encouraging moviegoers to enjoy both films as a double feature. “Barbie” achieved critical acclaim and made history by grossing over $1.404 billion. It not only claimed the title of the highest-grossing film of 2023 but also became the highest-grossing film ever directed by a solo female director. Additionally, it marked a significant milestone for Warner Bros., becoming their highest-grossing film ever. Globally, it secured its place as the 14th highest-grossing film of all time.
“Barbie” reimagines an iconic toy as a symbol of self-discovery and empowerment. With Gerwig’s imaginative storytelling and a stellar cast led by Margot Robbie and Ryan Gosling, the film is a testament to the enduring appeal of the Barbie franchise. Beyond its commercial success, “Barbie” stands as a groundbreaking achievement in cinema, championing diversity, and marking a triumphant moment for female directors in the industry. It invites audiences to embrace their individuality and embark on their own journeys of self-discovery.