Lady Bird Featurette - Greta Gerwig

We have several questions about this project, you probably have several questions about this project, but at least one of those questions can be definitively put to rest now. We’ve known that Margot Robbie would be producing and starring in the Warner Bros. live action Barbie film, a phrase that is still making our heads spin. It’s also been previously announced that no less a pair of talents than Greta Gerwig and Noah Baumbach wrote the script. Well, somebody must’ve figured that as long as they have Gerwig on board, they might as well bring her all the way.

Variety is now reporting that the filmmaker behind Little Women and Lady Bird will also be adding Barbie to her directing credits.

Variety notes that Robbie herself let the cat out of the bag in a recent interview with British Vogue: “People generally hear ‘Barbie’ and think, ‘I know what that movie is going to be,’ and then they hear that Greta Gerwig is writing and directing it, and they’re like, ’Oh, well, maybe I don’t…’” You said it, Margot. We have absolutely no idea what to expect from this movie, though Gerwig has more than earned herself the benefit of the doubt behind the camera. It’s still not quite clear what made it so crucial for an actor/writer/director from the indie scene to be the one to step up and take a swing at a (checks notes) Barbie movie, but we’re as morbidly curious as can be.

A Brief Rundown of (Deep Sigh) the Barbie Movie

We’ll give Hollywood this much: they’re tenacious. Efforts to get a Barbie film off the ground stretch back to when first Amy Schumer and then Anne Hathaway were considered for the main role. Proving that their pursuit of Gerwig was par for the course, Diablo Cody was initially attached before Patty Jenkins entered into early talks to direct. On the bright side, at least this suggests that the studio recognized how important a woman’s perspective would be and that empowering kids would be a main priority. As Robbie herself said when the project was officially announced:

“Playing with Barbie promotes confidence, curiosity and communication throughout a child’s journey to self-discovery. Over the brand’s almost 60 years, Barbie has empowered kids to imagine themselves in aspirational roles from a princess to president…I’m so honored to take on this role and produce a film that I believe will have a tremendously positive impact on children and audiences worldwide. I can’t imagine better partners than Warner Bros and Mattel to bring this film to the big screen.”

Oh, and let’s not even forget that there’s another Barbie-related movie in development at Bron Studios, though this one would be a more conventional biopic about the woman who invented the immensely popular toy, Ruth Handler. What can we say, it’s Barbie’s world and we’re just living in it.

Production for Robbie and Gerwig’s Barbie begins in early 2022 and is tentatively set for a 2023 release.

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