This weekend, the much-anticipated live-action film ‘Barbie’ hit theaters and quickly became a phenomenon, smashing box office records. Despite facing tough competition from ‘Oppenheimer,’ the movie captured the hearts of audiences, securing a resounding victory for the film industry. Both movies surpassed early projections and achieved remarkable success at the box office. While the sci-fi period drama led by Cillian Murphy, ‘Oppenheimer,’ earned an impressive $174 million globally, it was ‘Barbie,’ featuring Margot Robbie in the lead role, that emerged as the clear winner, raking in a total of $337 million globally and setting numerous records during its opening weekend.
The Journey of Barbie to the Big Screen
The journey of bringing Barbie to life on the big screen was a long one. Numerous attempts were made by different studios, with Universal trying in 2009 and Sony taking a shot in 2014, but both projects faced challenges and didn’t materialize. Finally, in 2018, Warner Bros secured the rights for the movie. Margot Robbie joined the project in 2019, and in 2021, Greta Gerwig was announced as the director and co-writer, alongside Noah Baumbach.
Barbie’s Unprecedented Success
According to a recent report from Deadline, ‘Barbie’ achieved the highest domestic opening of the year so far, surpassing ‘The Super Mario Bros’ record of $146.4 million. It also dethroned ‘The Super Mario Bros’ for the largest grossing day of 2023, raking in $70.8 million compared to Mario’s $54.8 million. The film’s success brought much-needed triumph to Warner Bros Discovery, which had previously faced box office disappointments with major DC titles like ‘The Flash,’ ‘Shazam 2,’ and ‘Black Adam.’ With ‘Barbie,’ the studio saw the largest advance sales ever, totaling $49.5 million. The movie also claimed the title of Warner Bros’ largest non-sequel, non-DC opening, a spot previously held by ‘It.’
The film’s triumph extended beyond the domestic market; it also marked the largest opening weekend for a toy-based movie. Additionally, for Ryan Gosling, Margot Robbie, and Greta Gerwig, ‘Barbie’ became their biggest domestic and overseas opening as actors and director, respectively. It’s worth noting that the movie’s opening weekend ranked as the second-highest for a female filmmaker, standing alongside ‘Captain Marvel,’ which started with a $456.6 million global box office.
Meanwhile, ‘Oppenheimer’ also achieved significant success, becoming Christopher Nolan’s third-highest-grossing opening weekend ever after ‘The Dark Knight’ and ‘The Dark Knight Rises.’ The film outperformed ‘John Wick: Chapter 4’ to become the highest-grossing R-rated film for an opening weekend. ‘Oppenheimer’ also enjoyed the distinction of having the biggest global opening weekend for a biopic and the most prominent global opening for a drama since 2019. Christopher Nolan’s film also secured his third most significant international box office opening and became his most extensive IMAX opening.
The Success of Creativity and Control
The impressive success of both ‘Barbie’ and ‘Oppenheimer’ reinforces the idea that when creators have complete control over their work, movies are more likely to resonate with audiences. This achievement underscores the importance of the ongoing WGA and SAG AFTRA strikes in the industry.
For movie enthusiasts, ‘Barbie’ and ‘Oppenheimer’ are currently showing in theaters.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about box office success
What is the movie ‘Barbie’ about?
‘Barbie’ is a live-action film that brings the iconic Barbie doll to life on the big screen. The movie follows the adventures of Barbie, portrayed by Margot Robbie, as she embarks on a captivating journey filled with excitement and inspiration.
Who directed the movie ‘Barbie’?
The movie ‘Barbie’ was directed by Greta Gerwig, who is also credited as a co-writer alongside Noah Baumbach.
How successful was the movie ‘Barbie’ at the box office?
‘Barbie’ achieved massive box office success, surpassing early projections and setting numerous records during its opening weekend. Globally, the film earned a total of $337 million, making it the highest domestic opening of the year and delivering the largest opening for a toy-based movie.
What was the competition faced by ‘Barbie’ during its opening weekend?
‘Barbie’ faced strong competition from the movie ‘Oppenheimer,’ which also enjoyed significant success at the box office. However, despite the competition, ‘Barbie’ emerged as the clear winner, captivating audiences worldwide.
How did ‘Barbie’ perform in comparison to other films?
The movie ‘Barbie’ not only became Greta Gerwig’s largest domestic and overseas opening as a director but also marked the second-highest opening weekend for a female filmmaker, standing alongside ‘Captain Marvel.’ It also achieved the highest opening weekend for a female director domestically.
Who were the lead actors in ‘Barbie’?
The movie ‘Barbie’ features Margot Robbie in the lead role, portraying the iconic Barbie doll. Additionally, Ryan Gosling played a prominent role in the film.
How long did it take to bring ‘Barbie’ to the big screen?
The journey of bringing ‘Barbie’ to the big screen was a lengthy one. The idea for the movie was first conceived in 2009 by Universal, but it faced challenges and didn’t materialize. After several attempts by different studios, Warner Bros eventually secured the rights in 2018, and the film came to life with Margot Robbie joining the project in 2019.
Did ‘Barbie’ receive positive critical reception?
The text doesn’t provide specific information about critical reception. However, given the film’s box office success and the excitement generated by fans, it suggests that ‘Barbie’ was well-received by audiences.
What other movies achieved success during the same time as ‘Barbie’?
The movie ‘Oppenheimer,’ directed by Christopher Nolan, also enjoyed significant success during the same time as ‘Barbie.’ It became Nolan’s third-highest-grossing opening weekend ever, surpassing previous successes like ‘The Dark Knight’ and ‘The Dark Knight Rises.’
Why is the success of ‘Barbie’ and ‘Oppenheimer’ significant for the film industry?
The remarkable success of both ‘Barbie’ and ‘Oppenheimer’ highlights the importance of creative control in filmmaking. When creators have the freedom to shape their work, it often resonates more strongly with audiences. This achievement reinforces the significance of ongoing labor strikes by the Writers Guild of America (WGA) and Screen Actors Guild – American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (SAG AFTRA) in the industry.
More about box office success
- Deadline: Greta Gerwig’s ‘Barbie’ Breaks Box Office Record for Female Director
- IMDb: Barbie (2023) Movie Details
- Variety: Margot Robbie to Star as Barbie in Live-Action Film
- The Hollywood Reporter: Warner Bros Discovery’s Box Office Struggles and ‘Barbie’ Success
- ScreenRant: Oppenheimer’s Box Office Triumph and Christopher Nolan’s Success
- Wikipedia: Greta Gerwig
- Wikipedia: Margot Robbie
- Wikipedia: Christopher Nolan
- Writers Guild of America (WGA) Website
- Screen Actors Guild – American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (SAG AFTRA) Website