The upcoming Barbie movie from director Greta Gerwig and starring Margot Robbie is now in production and the internet has been lit up by the set photos surfacing online. While Robbie and Ryan Gosling are the lead Barbie and Ken, the film reportedly has an ensemble of different versions of the popular toy character, with other Barbies including Emma Mackey. What better way to kick off filming than with a sleepover? Mackey recalls that is pretty much exactly what the cast did when they first convened. She also says the experience is a nice change of pace after her more serious performance as Emily Brontë in the film Emily.
"Right in the beginning, we had a sleepover for the Barbies, which would involve playing games with Scott [Evans] and Ncuti [Gatwa]," Mackey tells Empire, with activities including table tennis. "I don't play games usually, because I get so competitive and angry. But Scott and I were top of the game. It's great to do comedy, because Emily was a sad, dark drama. Barbie is light and funny and silly and American and pink."
As for working with Gerwig, Mackey says, "She's everything I could have dreamed of. She's so invested and precise, and so childishly delighted by what she's doing. Scorsese said, 'Never lose the amateur in you.' I see Greta behind her monitor laughing, and she'll reference something very niche and it will make total sense in that moment. Her mind is fizzing all the time. I love being around those kinds of people."
In addition to Robbie, Gosling, and Mackey, Barbie's ensemble also includes America Ferrera (Superstore), Kate McKinnon (Saturday Night Live), Simu Liu (Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings), Alexandra Shipp (tick, tick, ...Boom!), Will Ferrell (Anchorman), Issa Rae (Insecure), Michael Cera (Superbad), Ncuti Gatwa (Sex Education), and Ariana Greenblatt (Avengers: Infinity War).
"Barbie is one of the most iconic franchises in the world and we are excited to partner with Warner Bros. Pictures and Margot Robbie to bring her to life on the big screen," Ynon Kreiz, Chairman and CEO of Mattel, said in the film's official announcement. "We look forward to building on this collaboration with Warner Bros. Pictures as we tell the stories of our beloved brands. Mattel Films is on a path to demonstrate the enormous potential of our brand portfolio, as we continue to execute on our strategy of transforming Mattel into an IP-driven, high performing toy company."
Barbie opens in theaters on July 21, 2023.