A New Film About Barbie's Long-Overdue Makeover

April 24, 2018
Updated 2mo ago

Barbie, the doll that has long symbolized an impractical and unattainable standard of beauty for young girls, was invented by one of America's foremost businesswomen of her day.

This came as a surprise for the director of a new Hulu documentary, "Tiny Shoulders: Rethinking Barbie," that was to have its debut at the TriBeCa film festival this week.

The documentary, directed by Andrea Nevins, goes behind the scenes of Mattel as Barbie undergoes a major transformation to better reflect diverse characteristics and more reasonable notions of beauty.

"Multiculturalism as well as many different shapes, I think is part of the next step that we as women are allowed, in part because we have more power than we've ever had before and I think we can start to control the narrative and start to control female gaze as well as male gaze," said Nevins in an interview Tuesday with Cheddar.

She said that executives at Mattel, the toy company that's manufactured Barbie since 1959, decided now was the time to make a change because public awareness ー and backlash ー had gone mainstream.

"I think there was a lot of noise in culture and I think that they have had an antenna up since 1959 about what the noise in culture is and they heard loud and clear that women were no longer accepting that one form," she said.

For full article, click here.