The Barbie movie, directed by Greta Gerwig and starring Margot Robbie in the title role and Ryan Gosling as Ken, continues to break records in Hollywood since its pinktastic July 21 release — because what can’t Barbie do? Let’s look at them…
Barbie is the 1st film directed by a solo woman to reach $1 billion at box office.
Over the weekend, the film passed $1 billion in ticket sales worldwide. That meant Gerwig, who also co-wrote the project with partner Noah Baumbach, became the first solo female director to join that group.
Data from box office tracker The Numbers shows there are about 50 films that have reached $1 billion. Of those, three were co-directed by women: Frozen and Frozen II (Jennifer Lee and Chris Buck) and Captain Marvel (Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck). Patty Jenkins, who directed 2017’s Wonder Woman, came close with $823 million worldwide.
It had the biggest opening day of 2023.
Barbie shared an opening weekend with Oppenheimer, leading to the “Barbenheimer” phenomenon on social media, but it dominated at the box office from the jump and continues to do so. On its opening day, it brought in $70.5 million, making it the biggest opening day this year, beating out Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse’s $51.8 million.
It had the biggest opening weekend in 2023.
The film made $162 million at the box office, the biggest opening weekend of the year. The Super Mario Bros. Movie previously held the title, when it opened to $146 million over three days in April (and $204 million over the fill five-day Easter weekend).
It had the biggest opening weekend for a film directed by a woman.
With its $162 million, it put it ahead of Captain Marvel ($153 million) in 2019 and Wonder Woman ($103 million).
It had the biggest Monday for a Warner Bros. film.
A film’s momentum after opening weekend is also tracked because it shows whether filmgoers continue to have interest. The Monday after Barbie came out, it took in $26.1 million domestically. That broke a record previously held by 2008’s The Dark Knight.
It had the biggest opening week for a Warner Bros. film.
Barbie grossed $350 million in North America in 10 days — reaching that faster than any other release in the studio’s 100-year history.
It reached $1 billion faster than any other Warner Bros. film.
Jeff Goldstein, Warner’s president of domestic distribution, told the New York Times that it reached that milestone Sunday after being in theaters for 17 days. Previously Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 was fastest to $1 billion — in 19 days.
While it’s not an original film, it’s also not a direct follow-up to, or remake of, any prior movie. That record was held by The Secret Life Of Pets ($104.4M) in 2016.
It had the biggest opening for a film based on a toy.
The record was previously held by Transformers: Dark of the Moon with $115.9M.
It had the biggest opening for a movie without IMAX.
Gerwig told Collider that she wanted the movie to be shown in Dolby Vision with an Atmos mix, explaining, “I saw shapes in the clouds in the background that I’d never seen before. It just was outrageously beautiful and every part of Barbie Land was that much more rich and vibrant and then the same was true of the real world. For me, it just turned everything emotionally up to a 10. In this world, where there’s a lot of different formats of how people look at things, it is just sort of breathtaking to see this format is the closest thing I can think to of what was in in my mind for Barbie Land and the real world.”
Barbie had the biggest opening for a Greta Gerwig-directed film.
With its $162 million, it was far higher than Little Women ($108.1M) and Lady Bird ($49M).
It also the best opening for a Margot Robbie or Ryan Gosling film.
It surpassed her Suicide Squad ($133.7M) and his Blade Runner 2049 ($32.8M), respectively.
It had the best ticket presales.
The sales before the film had come out are the best the industry has seen since Avatar: The Way of Water, according to Deadline.
And these big milestones could continue as moviegoers continue to flock to theaters — dressed in pink, of course — to step into Barbie’s world. But it’s not all fluff — it has themes of female empowerment and pokes fun at patriarchy.
Meanwhile, Gerwig, Robbie and Gosling surprisingly did not have provisions in their contracts for sequels, according to the Hollywood Reporter. So the film’s franchise future is unclear, but a lot in Hollywood is unclear at the moment with the SAG-AFTRA and Writers Guild of America strikes happening simultaneously, bringing Hollywood productions to a halt.