Mattel’s Ynon Kreiz, Robbie Brenner on ‘Barbie’ Film: We Want to Make Movies That Have Cultural Impact

“We aren’t handing the IP to someone and letting them run away,” CEO Ynon Kreiz tells TheWrap

Mattel announced on Monday that writer-directors and real-life couple Greta Gerwig and Noah Baumbach have been tapped to write a movie based on its Barbie doll, one of the first to be announced out of newly established Mattel Films as well as its first collaboration with Warner Bros. Pictures.

I caught up with Mattel CEO Ynon Kreiz — who took over the company a year ago — and executive producer Robbie Brenner, who heads the newly formed Mattel Films, at Fortune’s Brainstorm Tech conference in Aspen.

They spoke about “Barbie,” which has Oscar nominee Margot Robbie attached to star, and another five films based on IP like Masters of the Universe, Magic 8 Ball, American Girl and Hot Wheels that Mattel has in development with studio and producing partners like MGM, Warner Bros., Blumhouse and Sony.

Greta Gerwig and Noah Baumbach are bold choices for a “Barbie” movie. Who chose them?

Robbie Brenner: We make all the decisions with the producers.

Ynon Kreiz: The choice of the writers, the directors, cast, the story, the scripts.

Brenner: Ynon and…

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Sharon Waxman

Sharon Waxman, CEO and Editor in Chief, is an award-winning journalist and best-selling author, a former Hollywood correspondent for The New York Times and a leading authority on the entertainment business and media. Before the Times, she was a correspondent for eight years for The Washington Post. She started out as a foreign correspondent, covering Europe and the Middle East for a decade. She is the founder and CEO of The Wrap, and the author of two books, including, “Rebels on the Backlot: Six Maverick Directors and How They Conquered the Hollywood Studio System.” She can be reached at sharon@thewrap.com.