It’s Barbie’s world and we’re just living in it. On 4 April 2023, girly pops everywhere were gifted with the official Barbie film trailer. The movie, due to be released on 21 July, and directed by certified creative babe and genius Greta Gerwig, has been one of the most highly anticipated productions of this decade and it’s safe to say that we’re all hysterically excited about it.
And while everyone is quite rightly still obsessing over the casting of Aussie queen Margot Robbie and Canadian heartthrob Ryan Gosling as the film’s premier Barbie and Ken, we’re also overwhelmingly shook at the rest of the Barbie star-studded cast, and it’s something worth delving into.
So, without further ado, let’s run through ten of the most exciting A-listers set to make an appearance in what’s likely to be the film of the year. From current rising stars to OG nostalgic besties, this cast truly hits the sweet spot.
When Simu Liu isn’t saving the world in the Marvel multiverse, he’s splashing in the pool in Barbie Land and schmoozing his fellow dolls with his dazzling eyes and toned physique. The Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings star will be playing one of the many Kens in the Barbie universe, and from the little we know about the upcoming film, it seems as though Liu will be competing with Gosling for Robbie’s (aka, supreme Barbie) attention.
One of the most unforeseen casting choices in Barbie has to be singer Dua Lipa, who’ll be gracing our screens as a mermaid Barbie. Lipa’s appearance in the blockbuster will mark her official acting debut. We’ve seen a number of artists sashay into the acting industry—Lady Gaga, Cher and Justin Timberlake to name a few (although, I’m not sure we can officially class Timberlake as an ‘actor’).
I can’t imagine there’s anyone on the planet who’s not a fan of OG actor Will Ferrell. Known for his iconic role as Buddy the Elf in, you guessed it, Elf, Ferrell is hanging up his jingle bells for the role of ‘unknown corporate boss’ in Barbie. Again, we’ve been kept very much in the dark in regards to the plot of Gerwig’s film and so all we can say is that Ferrell’s character seems to be some kind of business villain, but who knows? We’ll just have to wait and see.
Any Juno or Superbad fans out there, this one’s for you. Michael Cera’s guest role in Barbie is as equally ambiguous as the rest, although in his case, we at least have a name: Allan. Fans have been going feral online, speculating what part Cera will play in the film, and reminiscing over the actor’s previous characters. Supposedly, Allan was a 1960s obscure Barbie doll created by manufacturers Mattel to be Ken’s best friends, but unfortunately, after not being received well by kids, Allan was never seen again.
Next up is British acting royalty, Helen Mirren. Heralded as one of this generation’s most celebrated and respected actresses, Mirren will take on the role as the coveted narrator of the Barbie film. With such a legendary voice, it’s no surprise that she was brought onboard to take us along the way.
If you weren’t sure whether or not there’d be a President of Barbie Land, the news is officially in: yes. Not only is there going to be one, it’s going to be none other than American actress and comedian Issa Rae. Revered for showcasing the lives of actual women, Rae has been a tour de force in the creative industry for some time and it’s safe to say that fans were thrilled when it was revealed she’d be taking on the role of President.
Not everyone in Barbie Land will be gorgeously tanned, with hair that always falls just right and an outfit tailored to perfection. SNL comedian and actress Kate McKinnon will be repping it for the slightly more unhinged dolls of the world. Described as the Barbie who is “always in the splits,” McKinnon’s costume is made up of a rather choppy and wild haircut, crayon drawings on the face, and a very chaotic pink outfit which looks like something you’d find at the bottom of the dressing up drawer.
The next three names are ones most gen Zers will be familiar with, all hailing from the iconic Netflix show Sex Education, these three British rising stars have been making serious moves in Hollywood circles. First up is Emma Mackey, a French-born actress who, over the past five years, has exploded in the acting industry. Her recent projects include a biographical drama, Emily, which follows the life of famed author Emily Brontë, and Eiffel, a romantic drama set in Paris. In Barbie, Mackey will play a Barbie who’s recently won a Nobel Prize in Physics.
Next up is Connor Swindells. Known best for his role as moody yet adorably innocent Adam in Sex Education, Swindells will now be portraying “an intern or something” in the upcoming Barbie. While it doesn’t sound like the most thrilling part, I can imagine Swindells will find a way to add some pizazz.
Last but not least is our final Sex Education alum, Ncuti Gatwa, who will be playing another Ken doll in the summer flick. Gatwa has also had an incredibly busy few years, particularly as it was recently announced that he would be taking on the role of the next Doctor Who, with his first episode airing around Christmas in 2023.