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Barbie film tops $1bn in box office sales – breaking the record for a female director

Barbie film tops $1bn in box office sales – breaking the record for a female director

Barbie might be synonymous with pink – but her film is now firmly in the green, with more than $1bn (£784m) in box office sales worldwide.

The smash hit, directed by Greta Gerwig and starring Margot Robbie, reached the “Barbillion” on Sunday after pulling in a further $127m (£99m) in sales over the weekend.

It means the film has now broken the record for box office sales for a film by a female director – previously set by Patty Jenkins’ Wonder Woman.

It has also reached the $400m (£313m) US and $500m (£392m) worldwide sales mark faster than any other Warner Bros hit – including the Harry Potter films.

Oppenheimer, which was released on the same day three weeks ago, also celebrated a landmark this weekend, crossing $500m (£392m) globally.

“As distribution chiefs, we’re not often rendered speechless by a film’s performance, but Barbillion has blown even our most optimistic predictions out of the water,” said Jeff Goldstein and Andrew Cripps, who oversee domestic and international distribution for Warner Bros, in a joint statement.

Barbie star Margot Robbie and writer-director Greta Gerwig at the London premiere. Pic: Vianney Le Caer/Invision/AP
Image:
Barbie star Margot Robbie and writer-director Greta Gerwig at the London premiere. Pic: Vianney Le Caer/Invision/AP

In modern box office history, just 53 movies have made over $1bn – not accounting for inflation.

But Warner Bros announced on Sunday that Barbie had taken a total of $1.032bn (£809m) worldwide with $459m (£360m) from domestic theatres – counting the US and Canada – and another $572.1m (£448m) from overseas.

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The figures – a huge return on the film’s reported $150m (£117m) budget – have been confirmed by media analytics firm Comscore.

Warner Bros co-chairs and CEOs Michael De Luca and Pam Abdy described the “Barbillion” milestone as a “testament to her [Gerwig’s] brilliance”.

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Starring Robbie and Ryan Gosling as Barbie and Ken, the film sends Mattel Inc’s iconic doll on an adventure into the real world.

It has earned rave reviews from fans and critics, with Empire describing Barbie as “painfully funny”, while the Roger Ebert website described it as a “dazzling achievement, both technically and in tone”.

The film’s 21 July release date, which coincided with the release of Nolan’s Oppenheimer, also sparked the internet trend “Barbenheimer” for those who planned to see both films back-to-back.

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Last month, the Official Charts Company revealed that the soundtrack for Barbie had taken over the UK singles charts, becoming the first film soundtrack to land three top five songs at the same time.

American singer Billie Eilish’s contemplative What Was I Made For? reached number three last month, while Dua Lipa’s Dance The Night hit number four and the reworking of Aqua’s Barbie World by rappers Nicki Minaj and Ice Spice hit number five.

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