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MANILA, Philippines – Greta Gerwig, the writer-director of the award-winning 2023 film Barbie, has shared her thoughts on Filipino-American comedian Jo Koy’s jokes on the film during the 81st Golden Globes held last January 8.
Jo Koy was heavily criticized for his supposed sexist remarks on the film, which many women deem an empowering piece of media.
“The key moment in Barbie is when she goes from perfect beauty to bad breath, cellulite, and flat feet — or what casting directors call ‘character actor,'” he had quipped during the Golden Globes.
He had also said that Barbie was about “a plastic doll with big boobies.”
In a guesting on BBC Radio 4’s Today program on Wednesday, January 10 (Manila time), Gerwig said that Jo Koy wasn’t entirely wrong for saying that Barbie is a plastic doll with breasts.
“Well, he’s not wrong. She was the first doll that was mass-produced with breasts, so he was right on. I think so much of the movie was unlikely because it is about a plastic doll and Barbie, by her very construction, has no character, no story. She’s there to be projected upon,” Gerwig said.
The 40-year-old writer-director also explained what the Barbie doll’s creator, Ruth Handler, had kept in mind when designing the doll.
“But the insight Ruth Handler had when she was watching her daughter play with baby dolls, is she realized, ‘My daughter doesn’t want to pretend to be a mother. She wants to pretend to be a grown woman. That’s what she wants to imagine herself into,'” Gerwig continued.
Gerwig also said that while Barbie has been deemed both a villain and a hero since its inception in 1959, she felt that it was a “rich place to start” despite it seeming superficial.
Barbie raked in numerous awards during the 2024 Golden Globes.
It won the Cinematic and Box Office Achievement award, Best Screenplay, Best Comedy or Musical, Best Actress, comedy or musical through Margot Robbie, Best Supporting Actor through Ryan Gosling, and Best Original Song thanks to Billie Eilish’s “What Was I Made For.”
Gerwig was also named Best Director.
Other than Barbie, Gerwig is also behind the acclaimed coming-of-age films Lady Bird and Little Women. – Rappler.com