Randall Park warns Hollywood is learning the ‘wrong lessons’ after Barbie success

‘Ant-Man’ actor is frustrated with studios’s response to box office victory

Jacob Stolworthy
Tuesday 15 August 2023 10:25 BST
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Barbie teaser trailer

Randall Park has expressed his frustration with the consequence of Barbie’s success, as Mattel plots an entire universe of franchise films based on its games and children’s toys.

The film, based on the world-famous Mattel doll, has become one of the most bankable films of the year, sailing past the $1bn mark at the international box office after just two weeks.

Margot Robbie and Ryan Gosling head up the cast, playing Barbie and Ken respectively, and the film has seen director and co-writer Greta Gerwig earn the highest-grossing release for a female director ever in the US.

However, as is the norm when any movie proves a success, Hollywood studios are now eyeing up a way of capitalising on its popularity.

While Warner Bros Pictures is yet to officially announce a follow-up to Barbie, Mattel already has a long line of projects in the works based on their toys. This includes a live-action Polly Pocket film from Lena Dunham, and a Hot Wheels movie produced by JJ Abrams.

Park, star of sitcom Fresh Off the Boat, has now complained that Hollywood is “taking the wrong lessons” from Barbie’s success.

In a new interview with Rolling Stone, he remarked: “For example, Barbie is this massive blockbuster, and the idea is: Make more movies about toys! No. Make more movies by and about women!”

Park’s other credits include the Netflix romcom Always Be My Maybe and Marvel titles Ant-Man and the Wasp, Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantamania and WandaVision.

Barbie has become such a big hit that Robbie, who also produced the film, is reportedly set to earn roughly $50m (£39.4m) in salary and box office bonuses.

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Barbie
Barbie (Warner Bros Pictures)

Welsh comedian and actor Rob Brydon spoke about his brief cameo in the film, revealing why people’s response to his role “slightly stings” in a new interview.

Robbie previously said that casting Brydon in Barbie “was an enormous priority for me”. It turns out the Australian star was a huge Gavin & Stacey fan and, years ago, Brydon sent her a video message in character as Uncle Bryn for her birthday at the request of her friend.

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