Karma Maselli woke up Thursday morning knowing it was a special day. Finally the “Barbie” movie was here.
26-year-old Masili and her group of about 25 festive friends started rummaging through their closets for sheer pants, polyester T-shirts, and pink Crocs to assemble their outfits, each representing a different doll: Cowgirl Barbie, Sports Barbie, Vintage Barbie, Malibu Barbie, Mermaid Barbie and more.
Next up was Barbie Brunch at a friend’s Brooklyn apartment, which features an array of pink treats, including pink scrambled eggs, pop pies, and pasta salad with beets and pink vinaigrette.
“It felt like it was the Super Bowl at Barbie’s Lunch,” Masselli said. “I felt like we were getting together and having a girlhood vacation.”
By the afternoon, the group had arrived in Manhattan, at the AMC in Kips Bay, to see the long-awaited movie. The show was delayed by 25 minutes, but as soon as the movie started the packed theater erupted in applause. People clapped, cheered and giggled when the Warner Bros. logo appeared. – in pink – on screen and when Barbie was introduced.
“It was amazing,” Maselli said, exiting the stage. “I cried.”
Maselli, who wore a pink tank top with sparkly pink pants, was one of the many New Yorkers who attended the opening weekend of “Barbie,” Greta Gerwig’s blockbuster movie starring Margot Robbie as Barbie and Ryan Gosling as Ken.
Starting Thursday afternoon, in theaters across the country and even abroad, seats were sold out to audiences full of color—one color in particular. Some held on to their favorite dolls, while others greeted their friends with a grinning, “Hello Barbie.”
Many fans also chose to see a double feature by watching “Barbie” and “Oppenheimer,” Christopher Nolan’s biopic about J. Robert Oppenheimer and the making of the atomic bomb. The unlikely pairing of these two smashingly successful films led to the summer blockbuster event and its biggest opening weekend at the box office since 2019.
“You can feel the excitement, energy and joy in the theatre,” said Stephen Solomon, 24, who saw “Barbie” at AMC Lincoln Square on the Upper West Side. “It just felt like it happened.”
Mary Albus, 28, entered the AMC Kips Bay theater holding a vintage Barbie doll, which she got for her 21st birthday. Albus shares the doll with her group of friends – the Barbie Traveler Fraternity – as she passes her from friend to friend. Vintage Barbie was at a friend’s wedding in North Carolina; She also visited Chicago, Pennsylvania and other places.
It just so happened that the movie “Barbie” premiered during Albus’s role with the doll.
“They were like, ‘You have to take her to a Barbie movie,'” Albus said.
May Half said watching the film with her 9-year-old daughter, Aria, was a bonding event and a way to celebrate female empowerment. They both wore pink and white “Barbie” shirts.
“It’s like a new generation of films where women can be single and not married, and you don’t have to settle for anything,” Huff said.
Other fans who have seen the film have also related to the film’s themes of female empowerment.
“The film in particular was a really great commentary on the difficulties of women but also how beautiful it is at the same time and the division that exists in womanhood,” said Sadie Fitch, 23, who wore a pink jumpsuit with pink eyeliner. Fitch’s boyfriend, Taylee Mathis, 25, was wearing a pink T-shirt and pants and carrying a skateboard. She said she grew up loving Barbie dolls, watching Barbie animated movies and dressing like Barbie.
“It’s more than just rosy,” Mattis said. With Barbie, you can be anyone you want to be.
Mansi Srivastava contributed reporting.