For quite a few years now, Sony has been promising the arrival of a live-action film based on Mattel’s hugely popular Barbie doll. Since first announcing their intention to bring Barbie to life on the big screen back in 2009, the project has taken a variety of different directions in terms of its script. At one point, Oscar-winning screenwriter Diablo Cody (Juno, Jennifer’s Body) took a shot at rewriting what Sony had, but since that time the project’s been handed off to numerous other writers and not much has been said about the film’s progress.
Previous reports have stated that Sony is looking to release the film in June of 2017, but with no word on who’s directing the film, which actors will make up its cast – particularly the titular role of Barbie herself - or even if the live-action tale has officially settled on one specific script; exactly what’s going on has been a mystery. However, new information has begun to trickle forth and it looks as though Sony has finally set their sights on someone to take on the role of Barbie.
According to THR, Barbie will be played by Amy Schumer (Trainwreck, Inside Amy Schumer) in the upcoming live-action film. While this hasn’t been officially confirmed by either Schumer or Sony, word as of this writing is that Schumer has the role. The film will apparently tell the story - initially set in a perfect land of Barbies - where one woman (Schumer) realizes that she doesn’t fit in. After journeying to the real world, Schumer’s character discovers that her individuality is not something to be ashamed of, but rather a unique quality to be celebrated.
Schumer has been busy as of late, having written a highly acclaimed biography, The Girl With the Lower Back Tattoo and she’s currently on a successful worldwide stand-up comedy tour. There has also been talk regarding a project that she and Oscar-winning actress Jennifer Lawrence are writing together and she’s just completed work alongside Miles Teller (Bleed For This) on the upcoming drama Thank You For Your Service. As Barbie, however, Schumer will be entering into a world that Sony has aimed at the family-comedy demographic, with past hits like Enchanted, Splash and Big as models. As of this writing, the film still doesn’t have a director attached.
It will likely be a surprise for many to see someone like Amy Schumer in a role as child-friendly and highly regarded as Barbie. Schumer’s comedy as well as her acting roles have always leaned toward raunchy entertainment – a category she’s more than capable of pulling off. But a film like Barbie will be a whole new challenge for her and she’s sure to have more than her fair share of detractors before the film even hits theaters. At the same time, given the Barbie doll’s ongoing history of criticism for depicting an unrealistic body image, Schumer’s confidence about her own body type is a positive attribute – especially in a film designed to boost the confidence and self-esteem of young girls.
Whatever Sony does end up creating with Barbie, there is a great opportunity here to create a film with heart and a positive family-friendly message. What’s more, should the film achieve box office success, Schumer could very well find herself part of a franchise that continues to grow and evolve with a brand new generation of children – both female and male.
Screen Rant will keep you up to date on all incoming Barbie news.