“Barbie” Takes the Box Office by Storm

The Global Phenomenon of the Moive and Its Impact on Culture
Barbie Takes the Box Office by Storm
Photo Credit/ @wirestock

TheBarbie movie” released on July 21, 2023 has made approximately $1.4 billion at the box office and has left a huge and hopeful impact on the world, specifically on women. In the film industry, women are severely underrepresented so Greta Gerwig raised awareness of female filmmakers who have not been given a chance to participate in mainstream film-making. Gerwig is known for her acting, directing, and screenwriting. “Barbie” was directed by Greta Gerwig who now holds the position of directing the seventeenth highest grossing movie to date. This is an amazing accomplishment and great representation of women in the film industry. 

Gerwig shared on her Instagram that she had many ideas for this film and followed through with almost every single one of them. Having all these ideas also came with risks, such as harsh feedback from viewers, losing money, or Gerwig potentially ruining her career. Yet, Gerwig knew this throughout her journey of creating this film and was confident that the film could be influential for both genders.  Mattel, the company who created the Barbie doll, even questioned some of the menacing quotes Gerwig had filmed for the movie such as when Ariana Greeblatt’s character, Sasha, calls Barbie fascist and sexist. Mattel asked Gerwig if she could potentially leave this out. . Gerwig analyzes the scenes in her films in different aspects such as this scene with Sasha, in which she claims…

Gerwig said that her ….“But with that scene in particular, my awareness of Barbie as a thing in the world completely corresponded with me knowing the arguments against Barbie. I didn’t think there was any way to do this without giving that real estate and having well-articulated, correct arguments from a really smart character given to Barbie against Barbie.”

Gerwig’s main goal for this film was to represent the bumpy roads in life and how the good and bad in life can be all over the place. Greta claimed, “i’m interested in how life is complicated and messy and that there is nothing that’s either or, either good or bad, but it’s mostly it’s both.” This is demonstrated in the movie when stereotypical Barbie, who is the official Barbie in Barbie Land, starts to act differently as she has decided not to be perfect anymore. Barbie is also curious to find out what life is like outside of Barbie Land. Gerwig understands that stereotypical Barbie is perfect, but she wants the audience to know that even Barbie has her ups and downs. 

“Barbie has always been a symbol of this thing that you could never reach because she physically couldn’t stand up if she were a human being. So I wanted it to almost invert that formula and find a way that it gave you permission to just be yourself and know that that’s enough,” said Gerwig.

Gerwig created the Barbie script by using personal experiences from the actors, one of many being America Ferrara when her character, Gloria, has this long inspirational monologue at the end. Gerwig spoke with Ferrara prior to filming and took Ferrara’s own experiences into this monologue, which is what made it so powerful. Although the movie is humorous and enlightening, scenes like this monologue get the viewers to feel very emotional. Gerwig wants the viewers to laugh watching the film, but also to feel challenged as the world can be cruel. One can see that no matter what one’s opinion is on this movie the film represents equality and that no gender is superior to the other. 

Gerwig has directed several other women empowerment films, which include “Lady Bird and Little Women” In all of Gerwig’s films, the lead is played by  women. It is very inspiring to see Gerwig being so successful as women are highly underappreciated in the film industry.  Gerwig give women the representation they deserve. 

Hopefully, Hollywood will wake up and give female directors like Gerwig the opportunities and the appreciation they have earned..

As Barbie once said, “Barbie can be anything, women can be anything.”

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About the Contributor
Tiffany Richards, Staff Reporter
Hi! I am a senior and a new staff member of Crown. At Regina Dominican, I am involved in Orchesis, theater, and track. I am also a cheerleader for Notre Dame College Prep. I also work at AMC theaters. In my free time, I love to watch movies, go on walks, and hang with family and friends. I want to major in film and television because I have always loved film and I can't wait to pursue it. A fun fact about me is that I saw Steven Spielberg when I was in Los Angeles in 2022.  

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