Home MoviesMovie News Margot Robbie Reacts to Mattel’s Statement: “Barbie Isn’t Just a Superficial Movie”

Margot Robbie Reacts to Mattel’s Statement: “Barbie Isn’t Just a Superficial Movie”

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Live-action Barbie Film

Margot Robbie expressed surprise when informed about Robbie Brenner, Head and Executive Producer of Mattel Films, stating that the upcoming Barbie film, directed by Greta Gerwig and starring Robbie, is “not a feminist film.” As one of the most highly anticipated movies of the summer, Robbie takes on the role of the iconic doll, making her reaction noteworthy.

In an interview with Eliana Dockterman of Time Magazine, Brenner shared her opinion that Gerwig’s film lacked feminist themes, a sentiment echoed by other Mattel executives Dockterman interviewed. This conflicting viewpoint sharply contrasted with the writer’s own interpretation of the script and conversations with various actors, who spontaneously described it as a feminist work.

When the writer relayed Mattel’s statement to Robbie, she raised an eyebrow and asked, “Who said that?” Letting out a sigh, she responded, “It’s not about whether it is or isn’t. It’s a movie. A movie that encompasses so much.” Robbie emphasized to the author that the crucial point is that “we’re in on the joke.” She clarified that the film goes beyond a superficial portrayal of Barbie and delves into deeper themes and substance.

Image via Warner Bros.

Take a Tour of the ‘Barbie’ Dreamhouse with Margot Robbie

Mattel’s assertion that Gerwig’s film doesn’t touch on the message of femininity seems out of touch, especially considering the timing. Gerwig’s previous films, such as Frances Ha, Lady Bird, and Little Women, have all explored femininity extensively, and Barbie’s plot touches not only on femininity but also on the concept of womanhood and mortality.

What’s Barbie About?

The movie is set in Barbie Land, a utopian society where every Barbie holds an impressive occupation. Narrated by Helen Mirren, the audience learns that all feminist and equal rights issues have been resolved. Every night, the Barbies come together for sleepovers, celebrating their beauty and confidence. The Kens, played by Ryan Gosling, Simu Liu, and others, exist as convenient dance partners. However, Robbie’s Barbie begins to contemplate mortality, noticing changes like her once-arched feet becoming flat and cellulite appearing on her thigh.

To confront these transformations, Barbie embarks on a journey into the real world accompanied by Ken, who has felt like a mere accessory in Barbie’s idyllic existence. The real world proves to be a stark contrast. Men in suits at Mattel, led by CEO Will Ferrell, deliver empty speeches about female empowerment, while preteens criticize Barbie for negatively impacting their self-esteem. Both Barbie and Ken embark on quests of self-discovery in this new reality.

We will all enter the Barbie world on July 21, 2023. Watch the trailer below:

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about feminist themes

Is the upcoming Barbie film considered a feminist movie?

According to Margot Robbie, one of the film’s stars, the Barbie film encompasses feminist themes. While some Mattel executives have stated otherwise, Robbie emphasizes that the movie goes beyond superficiality and explores deeper themes and substance.

What is the plot of the Barbie film?

The film is set in Barbie Land, a perfect society where every Barbie has an impressive occupation. However, when Robbie’s Barbie starts contemplating mortality and noticing changes in her appearance, she embarks on a journey into the real world accompanied by Ken. In this new reality, both Barbie and Ken undergo quests of self-discovery.

When will the Barbie film be released?

The Barbie film is set to be released on July 21, 2023.

Who are the key individuals involved in the movie?

The film is directed by Greta Gerwig and stars Margot Robbie as Barbie. Robbie Brenner serves as the Head and Executive Producer of Mattel Films, the production company behind the film.

What is the response to Mattel’s statement about the film?

Margot Robbie expressed surprise and disagreed with Mattel’s statement that the Barbie film is “not a feminist movie.” She emphasized that the movie encompasses much more than that and that being “in on the joke” is crucial.

More about feminist themes

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dancingqueen June 28, 2023 - 2:42 am

Barbie’s going on a self-discovery journey? Sounds intriguing! Can’t wait to see how they tackle real-life issues. Go Margot and Greta!

jOhn_doe123 June 28, 2023 - 5:27 am

omg, i cant beleive Mattel sayin Barbie aint a feminst movie. Margot Robbie got it right, its so much more than that! go barbie!

filmfanatic22 June 28, 2023 - 10:29 am

lol, Margot’s reaction is priceless! Barbie movie ain’t just about lookin’ pretty, it’s got depth and substance, people! Mattel needs a reality check.

bookworm77 June 28, 2023 - 3:19 pm

whoa, Mattel needs to get with the times! Greta Gerwig’s films always tackle femininity, so why not Barbie too? Can’t wait for this flick!


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