Margot Robbie Is Barbie Only Because Of Amy Schumer

Amy Schumer was cast to play Barbie before Margot Robbie, but the comedian left the project over creative differences.

By TeeJay Small
| Published

margot robbie barbie movie
Margot Robbie in Barbie

Hollywood is full of stories of what could have been. From recast characters such as James Rhodes in the Marvel cinematic universe to tales of Bob Odenkirk auditioning for the role of Michael Scott on The Office, many beloved movies and television programs could have turned out vastly different from the final product we received if the casting directors had had a different vision. According to a recent write up in Joe.Co, this is also the case for the upcoming Margot Robbie film, Barbie, which was originally set to star comedian Amy Schumer.

The highly anticipated film recently released its second teaser trailer featuring Margot Robbie in the titular role of Barbie and Ryan Gosling as Ken. While the trailer provides a look into the world of the famed doll, in which each iteration of Barbie and Ken are played by a myriad of actors, including Emma Mackey and Marvel’s Simu Liu, it’s hard to imagine Amy Schumer in the lead role. But apparently that’s exactly what was set to happen up until 2017, when the long awaited film adaptation held Schumer in the top billed position.

The film has been in active development since 2009, even swapping production studios due to a continued failure to launch. In 2014, Universal Pictures allowed the film to be picked up by Sony, who still didn’t cast anyone the picture until Amy Schumer joined two years later. The film would again change hands from Sony to Warner Bros in 2018, eventually casting Margot Robbie as Barbie, due to alleged scheduling conflicts with Amy Schumer.

barbie margot robbie

Of course, Margot Robbie seems like a perfect fit to play Barbie in the film, with many fans stating such in the comments section of the recent trailer. Amy Schumer recently broke her silence on the matter, explaining that her departure from the film really came as a result of creative differences, rather than scheduling issues. For starters, Schumer disagreed with the script, which poses Barbie as a doll having an existential crisis once she begins to understand the nature of her existence, whereas Schumer wanted the character to reclaim some level of autonomy by being a scientist or an inventor.

Schumer became highly perturbed when the studio offered her the consolation of allowing Barbie to sculpt a pair of high heels, rather than inventing something meaningful or technologically advanced. High heels are a central and iconic part of the look for the character, as seen in the recent trailer, which opens on a shot of Margot Robbie’s Barbie stepping out of the heels as she walks. The final straw for Amy Schumer also involved footwear, when the studio apparently sent her a pair of congratulatory Manolo Blahnik shoes to celebrate the news of her casting, prompting Schumer to leave the project.

While very little is known about the plot of the film at this time, fans seem to have very high hopes for Margot Robbie’s performance. Of course, this casting news will cause many fans to wonder what Barbie could have been if Amy Schumer had gotten her way.


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