You Won’t Believe This, But Amy Schumer Playing Barbie is “Controversial”


The recent reports that Amy Schumer will play the leading role in Mattel’s forthcoming Barbie movie are the dictionary definition of a mixed bag. On one hand: hurray for casting a smart, funny actor who proudly doesn’t conform to the comically unreasonable body type standards perpetuated by the doll for decades. On the other: it’s still a fucking Barbie movie, which is depressing both because a) however sly the casting may be, it’s still a celebration of that garbage doll and its evil beauty standards, and b) it’s another big movie based on dolls and brands and bullshit.

Anyway, as if on cue, the trolls have made their noise, and also as if on cue, Schumer has struck back. Why, it’s almost as if this was stunt casting, designed to get a response and free pre-production press or something.

“Is it fat shaming if you know you’re not fat and have zero shame in your game?” Schumer asked in an Instagram post. “Thanks to everyone for the kind words and support and again my deepest sympathy goes out to the trolls who are in more pain than we will ever understand. I want to thank them for making it so evident that I am a great choice. It’s that kind of response that let’s you know something’s wrong with our culture and we all need to work together to change it.”

In other words, it sounds like an uninspired franchise play is hoping it can look less like that by positioning itself as some sort of radical feminist act. Sounds vaguely familiar.