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Greta Gerwig was ‘terrified’ that ‘Barbie’ would kill her profession


Telling the story of life in plastic didn’t immediately sound unbelievable to filmmaker Greta Gerwig.

The 39-year-old actress and director admitted to being nervous about taking over the Margot Robbie and Ryan Gosling-fronted “Barbie” movie.

“It was terrifying. I feel there’s something about ranging from that place where it’s like, ‘Well, anything is feasible,’” Gerwig told Dua Lipa on the singer’s recent “At Your Service” podcast. “It felt like vertigo starting to write down it. Like, where do you even begin? What can be the story?

“Normally, that’s where the very best stuff is. Once you’re like, ‘I’m petrified of that,’” she added. “Anything where you’re like, ‘This could possibly be a career-ender,’ then you definitely’re like, ‘OK, I probably should do it.’”

Gerwig further gushed that bigwigs at Barbie doll manufacturer Mattel have been “amazing partners” on the movie, granting her a level of “trust and … freedom” that she feels is “incredibly” rare.

Greta Gerwig from the film “White Noise” speaks onstage during Contenders Film: Los Angeles at DGA Theater Complex on Nov. 19 in Los Angeles, California. Deadline via Getty Images

“Whatever we wanted [the film] to be, they didn’t attempt to micromanage it,” she told Lipa. “They were completely onboard as partners, and that was extraordinary.”

Although details of the plot for the upcoming flick haven’t been released, Gosling previously told Jimmy Fallon that it’s the “best script I’ve ever read.”

“The Notebook” star Gosling also described his character, Ken, as a “loser” with no money, job, house or automobile, but clarified to the late-night host: “Those are usually not plot details. These are only objective facts about Ken. That’s the Ken life.”

Margot Robbie as Barbie.Margot Robbie as Barbie.©Warner Bros/Courtesy Everett C

What we do know is that the style within the movie is internet-breaking, per the photographs of Robbie and Gosling on-set in fun costumes that went viral this summer.

Robbie later said she was “mortified” by the paparazzi’s presence and said photographers capturing the actors on neon rollerskates was “probably the most humiliating moment of my life.”

Greta Gerwig also added that Mattel has been Greta Gerwig also added that Mattel has been “amazing.”Getty Images

The film incorporates a star-studded forged including Will Ferrell, Issa Rae, America Ferrera, Michael Cera, Kate McKinnon and Simu Liu — with the latter admitting that waxing his body for the rumored role of one other Ken doll “was one of the painful experiences of my life.”

“Barbie” hits theaters on July 21, 2023.

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