Will Ken Roll Solo in a New ‘Barbie’ Spin-Off Movie?

Screenwriting duo Greta Gerwig and Noah Baumbach played coy when asked about a sequel

Ryan Gosling as Ken in Greta Gerwig's "Barbie" (Warner Bros.)
Warner Bros.

Since his debut in 1961 as Barbie’s buff, plastic boyfriend, Ken has always played second fiddle next to the legendary blonde bombshell. Could Ken finally be stepping out of Barbie’s shadow and get his own “Barbie” spin-off movie?

“We can’t comment on that,” co-writer Noah Baumbach said Sunday on 60 minutes.

Co-writer and director Greta Gerwig added: “I can’t comment on that. I mean the truth is … I guess we’ll see.”

According to an insider with knowledge of the project, if there is a sequel, it is currently in the idea phase, if at all. Nothing is currently imminent. If there is a sequel, Gerwig has plenty of ideas.

In initial drafts of the “Barbie” screenplay, co-writers Baumbach and Gerwig delved further into examining the cultural impact of Ken and his relationship with the Barbie brand. Scenes cut from the script gave more screen time to exploring real-world examples of the “Ken effect.”

“We tapped into whatever the Ken/Ryan voice was in such a way – we had way too much material for Ken. We would write and write and write,” Gerwig said.

“Yeah don’t give it away because we might do … there was more about what the Ken effect in the real world was,” Baumbach added.

One such sequence involved Ryan Gosling appearing as himself, interspersed with his role as the plastic Mattel doll.

“The movie is essentially always what it was, but there was a version that was just – if you thought this one had layers, it exploded at a certain point,” Gerwig said.

Sailing past $1.4 billion globally, “Barbie” has cemented itself as not just the highest earning film of 2023, but also the most lucrative Warner Bros. release of all time.

Earlier on Monday, the news broke that “Barbie’ will make its streaming debut on Max on Dec. 15.


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