Albeit a fictional world, the “Barbie Land” erected for the upcoming Greta Gerwig film “Barbie” impacted real-world infrastructure, causing an international shortage on pink paint.
The color pink is practically synonymous with Barbie dolls and its accessories – an element Gerwig did not want to deviate from for her movie.
“Maintaining the ‘kid-ness’ was paramount,” Gerwig told Architectural Digest of not straying away from the famous features of the Mattel Inc. toys. “I wanted the pinks to be very bright, and everything to be almost too much.”
“Too much” was a direction not taken lightly when it came to set construction. The film’s production designer Sarah Greenwood admitted that “the world ran out of pink,” referencing one particular fluorescent hue from Rosco paint.
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The set, which was built on the Warner Bros. Studios lot outside London, includes all the iconic elements of Barbie’s Dreamhouse, even the infamous waterslide.
“I wanted to capture what was so ridiculously fun about the Dreamhouses,” Gerwig explained.
“Why walk down stairs when you can slide into your pool? Why trudge up stairs when you take an elevator that matches your dress?”
In preparation of designing the movie set, a Dreamhouse was purchased from Amazon.
“The ceiling is actually quite close to one’s head, and it only takes a few paces to cross the room. It has the odd effect of making the actors seem big in the space but small overall,” Gerwig explained.
“There are no walls and no doors.… Dreamhouses assume that you never have anything you wish was private – there is no place to hide.”
Ultimately, the rooms in the Barbie house were built with proportions 23% smaller than regular human size, emphasizing the peculiar scale that is original to the toys.
The film starring Margot Robbie as Barbie and Ryan Gosling as Ken premieres on July 21.
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