Sharon Stone discusses her failed Barbie pitch, says executives “didn’t think Barbie should be powerful”

Sharon Stone discusses her failed Barbie pitch in the ’90s, saying that executives “didn’t think Barbie should be powerful.”

Last Updated on March 26, 2024

Sharon Stone, Barbie

Barbie was easily the biggest movie of the year; not only generating $1.4 billion worldwide but dominating pop culture discourse for months on end. It was a fitting conclusion for a project that had spent decades in development hell, with Sharon Stone even pitching a Barbie movie way back in the ’90s.

While speaking on Dana Carvey and David Spade’s Fly On The Wall podcast, Sharon Stone spilled a few more details on her failed Barbie pitch. “I went to the studio to try and make Barbie in the 1990s with a producer, a friend of mine, and I had the then-CEO of Mattel on my side,” Stone said. “We got thrown out of the studio. They were like, ‘Why would you take this American icon and try to destroy it? What is wrong with you?’ I got a lecture and an escort to the door.

Stone went on to detail the opening scene of her Barbie movie and explained that studio executives took issue with it, believing that Barbie shouldn’t be seen as powerful. “We had it so the opening scene would be Barbie pulling up to Mattel in her Barbie car and secret service come out and their feet are as big as the car,” Stone said. “They escort her into Mattel and everybody falls aside because she’s the most important member of Mattel. All the big people are chasing her around and kissing her ass because she’s the queen of Mattel and it’s about the power of being Barbie and what Barbie could do in the world because she’s so powerful. But they didn’t think Barbie should be powerful.

Given the enormous success of Barbie, it’s only natural that the studio would want a sequel, but Margot Robbie remains skeptical. “Its funny, that knee-jerk reaction in this day and age for everyone to immediately ask about a sequel,” Robbie said earlier this year. “I don’t think it was like that 20 years ago. This wasn’t designed to be a trilogy.” Not all movies need sequels, but the chance of another billion-dollar payday will be hard for the studio to resist.

Margot Robbie actually predicted that Barbie would gross $1 billion when she first pitched the project, although at the time she thought she had oversold it. “I think my pitch in the green-light meeting was the studios have prospered so much when they’re brave enough to pair a big idea with a visionary director,” Robbie said. “And then I gave a series of examples like, ‘dinosaurs and [Steven] Spielberg,’ that and that, that and that – pretty much naming anything that’s been incredible and made a ton of money for the studios over the years. And I was like, ‘And now you’ve got Barbie and Greta Gerwig.’ And I think I told them that it’d make a billion dollars, which maybe I was overselling, but we had a movie to make, okay?!

Source: Fly on the Wall

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Based in Canada, Kevin Fraser has been a news editor with JoBlo since 2015. When not writing for the site, you can find him indulging in his passion for baking and adding to his increasingly large collection of movies that he can never find the time to watch.