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Margot Robbie on how she got into the character of ‘Barbie’: “She’s sexualized, but she’s never supposed to be sexy”


Margot Robbie used an episode of This American life and society’s historic sexualization of a doll who “has no reproductive organs” unpacked to help her get into character for the next Barbie movie.

The star and producer of the movie speaks against Fashionalong with several other members of the Barbie creative team and cast, about preparing to play the iconic Mattel doll. As Robbie goes behind the scenes from the film’s concept to completion, Robbie talks about how she navigated to get into the character of Barbie.

Robbie, who says she “didn’t even think about playing Barbie until she was years into the project’s development,” points to actress Gal Gadot — who wasn’t available to star in the project — as some kind of human personification of the character. “Gal Gadot is Barbie energy,” says the actress-producer. “Because Gal Gadot is so impossibly beautiful, but you don’t hate her because she’s so beautiful, because she’s so genuinely sincere and so enthusiastically nice, it’s almost dorky. It’s just before you’re a sucker.

The Birds of prey And I, Tonya star would also lean on director and co-writer Greta Gerwig, who helped her navigate how to get into the mind of the character. “I was like ‘Greta, I have to do this whole character journey.’ And Greta was like, “Oh, I’ve got a really good podcast for you,” Robbie recalls.

That podcast was one episode of This American life, which followed a woman who says she “barely does any introspection”. “You know how you have a voice in your head all the time?” Robbie explains to the magazine. “This woman, she doesn’t have that voice in her head.”

While that helped her get into Barbie’s head, it required another conversation to get into her body. Robbie said she really had to unpack how the doll is culturally sexualized.

“I’m like, okay, she’s a doll. She is a plastic doll. She has no organs. If she has no organs, she has no reproductive organs. If she has no reproductive organs, would she feel sexual desire? No, I don’t think she could,” the Barbie says star. “She has been sexualized. But she should never do that are sexy. People can project sex onto her. Yes, she can wear a short skirt, but because it’s fun and pink. Not because she wanted you to see her ass.

In the Fashion piece, other interesting tidbits about the film’s approach were revealed, including that Gerwig penned a super “abstract poem about Barbie” as part of the film’s treatment, with the Oscar-nominated writer-director adding that it was “an number of similarities with the Apostolic Creed.” At another point, Gerwig discusses that the order in which Barbie and Ken were created by Mattel, with Ken “invented after Barbie”, has resulted in a kind of creation myth that is “the opposite of the creation myth in Genesis”.

The cast also had some exchanges to support each other through filming. Before they started in London, Gosling – who was unable to attend a slumber party thrown by Gerwig for the Barbies from the film to which Kens had been invited but couldn’t stay the night – instead sent a special singing telegram. According to Fashionit came “in the form of an elderly Scottish man in a kilt who played the bagpipes and loved the speech Brave heart.”

Robbie had her own gifts for Gosling. “She left a pink gift with a pink bow every day, from Barbie to Ken, while we were filming,” he says. “They were all beach related. Like puka shells, or a sign that says “Pray for Branding.” Because it’s Ken’s work just beach. I never quite figured out what that means. But I felt like she was trying to help Ken understand, through these gifts she gave.

Merry C. Vega is a highly respected and accomplished news author. She began her career as a journalist, covering local news for a small-town newspaper. She quickly gained a reputation for her thorough reporting and ability to uncover the truth.

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