When the Barbie movie was first announced, nobody quite knew what to make of it. After all, it was hard to imagine doing anything with this IP that wouldn’t feel like a long toy commercial (not unlike films for other toy properties like Transformers and G.I. Joe).
However, the combination of Greta Gerwig’s inspired directing and Margot Robbie’s talented acting helped that film earn more than $1.4 billion dollars at the box office. That kind of success usually translates to a sequel, and Vanity Fair reports that Gerwig has considered making a Barbie 2 film in which Ryan Gosling’s Ken is the main star.
Barbie 2 Will Be A Ken Movie?
Now, before you start bellowing out “I’m Just Ken” at the top of your lungs, you should know that Gerwig hasn’t made any firm plans for Barbie 2 just yet. During a 60 Minutes interview, she was asked point-blank about whether she might make a sequel that focuses on Ken. Rather than giving any kind of outright confirmation or denial, the acclaimed director responded with a much more cryptic “I mean, the truth is, you know…I guess we’ll see.”
Would A Sequel Be As Successful With Just Ken?
Some Margot Robbie superfans might consider it blasphemy that Gerwig would consider effectively turning Barbie 2 into a Ken-centric film, especially because a big part of that first movie was helping Barbie discover the desire to pursue her own goals rather than define herself via the male gaze of Gosling’s Ken. However, that door swings both ways. The Ken at the end of that film learned the importance of not defining himself by whether or not Barbie cares for him, and that leaves plenty of dramatic potential for a sequel.
Ken’s Scrapped Material
Aside from the narrative possibilities, another reason Greta Gerwig might want to center Barbie 2 around Ken is that plenty of material originally written for his character for the first film ended up on the cutting room floor. The director admitted in the interview that she had Ryan Gosling in mind for the role all along, and her passion for developing his character meant that “We had way too much material for Ken.” Some of that material might make its way into Barbie 2, though given Ken’s character development in the first film, we are likely to see a very different Ken in the sequel.
The Fan-Favorite Of Barbie
In the original movie, Ken has a solid arc: he goes from being a beach bum Barbie simp to being a symbol of the patriarchy before reforming, and the character is left wondering who he is without Barbie as she moves to the real world. A Barbie 2 movie would most likely try to answer Ken’s existential question by having him discover a new reason for living, and that may include everything from pursuing a new relationship to following Barbie into the real world on his own quest for self-discovery. If all of us are really, really lucky, that quest will give us another banger song like “I’m Just Ken.”
Does Ken Still Have A Shot With Barbie?
The interesting paradox at the heart of making Barbie 2 into a Ken film is that we don’t think there can be any sequel that doesn’t feature the return of Margot Robbie’s Barbie. Will her return jeopardize her and Ken’s mutual attempts to move on, or will their reunion help each of them achieve the independence they are seeking? Either way, we’re confident that Greta Gerwig will once again fulfill the prophecy of the “Barbie Girl” song: life in plastic really is fantastic, especially when the dollars are as beautiful and charming as Margot Robbie and Ryan Gosling.