“Since the beginning of time, since the first little girl ever existed, there have been dolls,” narrates a very familiar voice in the opening of the newly released Barbie trailer. “But the dolls were always and forever baby dolls, until…”
The trailer, in an amusing homage to 2001: Space Odyssey, then pans up to a monolithic sized Margot Robbie, dressed as one of the earlier Barbie models. (That’s one way to keep the Barbiecore trend going into the new year!)
While the visual of a giant Margot Robbie might seem hard to outdo, it’s the mystery figure behind the narration which has truly stunned fans.
It’s none other than Dame Helen Mirren.
Dame Helen’s intro is just one surprise, with plenty more sure to come.
Not much is revealed about the movie’s plot. All we see is the towering Margot Robbie, wearing a black-and-white strapless swimsuit, cat-eye glasses, and blond bangs.
Barbie lowers her sunglasses and winks once to nearby girls playing with their baby dolls, who immediately drop or violently smash their toys. We also see a short clip of Ryan Gosling, cast as Ken, in what appears to be a fight scene.
Confirming her involvement with the trailer, Helen told Vanity Fair, “I thought it was an incredibly funny, fun thing to be involved in.”
Helen has previously worked with Barbie director, Greta Gerwig, in the 2011 remake of Arthur. Helen played Arthur’s nanny, and reveals she forged a great relationship with Greta.
“We formed a good bond together,” Helen says, noting Greta’s impressive filmmaking career since. Greta has gone on to earn Oscar nominations for writing and directing Lady Bird, as well as writing and directing 2019’s Little Women.
Helen calls her “an amazing visionary and an extraordinary talent.”
Will Helen have a bigger role in the enigmatic Barbie movie which has kept all plot details a mystery so far? That remains to be seen.
“I did shoot an appearance, but whether that’s gotten to stay in the movie, I don’t know,” explains Helen.
What little we do know about the Barbie movie comes from Will Ferrell, also starring in the film slated for a July 2023 release.
“It is, in my humble opinion, the ultimate example of high art and low art,” Will told WSJ Magazine.
“It’s a loving homage to the brand and, at the same time, couldn’t be more satirical—just an amazing comment on male patriarchy and women in society and why Barbie’s criticized and yet why every little girl still wants to play with Barbie. Boy, when I read it, I was like, This is fantastic.”
Margot Robbie has also shared similar cryptic comments. “It comes with a lot of baggage!” the Australian actress told British Vogue in June 2021.
“And a lot of nostalgic connections. But with that comes a lot of exciting ways to attack it. 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….”
Fans will have to wait until July 21, 2023 to find out just what the movie has in store.
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Jack Slater is not the Last Action Hero, but that's what comes up first when you Google him. Preferring a much more sedentary life, Jack gets his thrills by covering news, entertainment, celebrity, film and culture for woman&home, and other digital publications.
Having written for various print and online publications—ranging from national syndicates to niche magazines—Jack has written about nearly everything there is to write about, covering LGBTQ+ news, celebrity features, TV and film scoops, reviewing the latest theatre shows lighting up London’s West End and the most pressing of SEO based stories.
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