The Talent That Almost (but Didn’t) Make ‘Barbie’
ManOfTheCenturyMovie Film The Talent That Almost (but Didn’t) Make ‘Barbie’

The Talent That Almost (but Didn’t) Make ‘Barbie’



The Talent That Almost (but Didn’t) Make ‘Barbie’

Summer 2023 is a great time to be a cast member of “Barbie.” Greta Gerwig’s studio comedy adaptation of Mattel’s iconic doll line has gotten rave reviews, soared past $1 billion at the global box office, and become a bona fide pop culture phenomenon. It makes you wonder — are the people who very nearly were a part of it experiencing some major FOMO right now?

As you’d expect from a film based on the most famous toy in the world, “Barbie” is the end result of a very long development process, one that goes all the way back to 2009 and involves a switch between three different film studios. Mattel initially started developing the movie at Universal Pictures, only for nothing to come from the deal, and moved the project over to Sony Pictures in 2014. During the film’s time in development at Sony Pictures, many writers and producers were attached at various points to work on the project — most intriguingly, Diablo Cody wrote a draft of a screenplay in 2015. And several potential Barbies — most notably Amy Schumer and Anne Hathaway — boarded the project, only to leave at certain points.

In 2018, Sony Pictures’ deal with Mattel for the film rights expired, and the project moved over to Warner Bros. Pictures. Margot Robbie entered early talks for the role soon after, and officially took the part in 2019, and approached Gerwig to sign on as writer soon after. By 2021, Gerwig had graduated from just writing to full-on directing the film.

But even when Gerwig was locked in as the brain behind “Barbie,” a lot of talent was considered for the movie that didn’t end up making the final project. An eclectic bunch of names — Saoirse Ronan, Bowen Yang, Dan Levy — were considered for cameos or small roles in the film, only to pass due to scheduling conflicts. Here’s a guide to all the actors, writers, and directors that almost, but didn’t, join the “Barbie” movie. Entries are listed in roughly chronological order of the talent’s brief attachment to the project.

Here are those who were almost involved…

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