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  • Writer's pictureBlack Hangar Studios

Greta Gerwig is the first-ever solo female director with a billion-dollar film

Updated: Oct 11, 2023

‘Barbie’ Surpasses $1 Billion Globally After 17 Days of Release.

Greta Gerwig’s pink-coated fantasy comedy has surpassed $1 billion at the global box office, including $459 million in North America and $572 million internationally. This makes Gerwig the first-ever solo female filmmaker with a billion-dollar film.

Three other billion-dollar blockbusters were co-directed by women, including “Frozen” ($1.3 billion) and “Frozen 2” ($1.45 billion) both co-directed by Jennifer Lee and Chris Buck, as well as “Captain Marvel” ($1.1 billion), co-directed by Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck.

“Barbie” is hitting the coveted milestone after just 17 days of release, becoming the fastest Warner Bros. release (and eighth in the studio’s 100-year history) to join the $1 billion club. “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2” previously held that record at 19 days.

It’s only the second blockbuster this year and the sixth of the pandemic-era to cross $1 billion, following “Spider-Man: No Way Home,” “Top Gun: Maverick,” “Jurassic World Dominion” and “Avatar: The Way of Water.”

Thanks to zeitgeist-smashing buzz, “Barbie” has remained No. 1 at the box office for three consecutive weekends — and that’s despite competition from “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem,” “Meg 2: The Trench” and “Oppenheimer.” It’s already the second-highest grossing movie of 2023, behind only Universal and Illumination’s “The Super Mario Bros. Movie,” which earned $574 million domestically and $1.35 billion worldwide.

The rapturously reviewed “Barbie” opened on July 21 and smashed expectations with its $155 million domestic debut, ranking as the biggest opening weekend of 2023, as well as the best start for a film directed by a woman. It arrived as a full-fledged phenomenon, thanks to the marketing campaign of the year and stellar word-of-mouth to match. There was also hype from “Barbenheimer,” the nickname for the twin release date with Christopher Nolan’s dark historical drama “Oppenheimer.”

Gerwig, the Oscar-nominated director of “Lady Bird” and “Little Women,” co-wrote the screenplay with her partner Noah Baumbach. Margot Robbie and Ryan Gosling star as the stereotypical versions of Barbie and Ken, who leave behind the Dreamhouse on a quest for self-discovery in the real world. Issa Rae, America Ferrera, Dua Lipa, Simu Liu, Michael Cera, Helen Mirren, John Cena and Will Ferrell round out the cast.

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