Greta Gerwig has revealed she had to fight to keep the ‘I’m Just Ken’ dance sequence in Barbie.
During a Screen Talk conversation at the BFI London Film Festival on Sunday (October 8), Gerwig said she was asked whether the sequence led by Ryan Gosling’s Ken was necessary during a “big meeting”.
“It just said in the script, ‘And then it becomes a dream ballet and they work it out through dance,’” Gerwig told Succession creator Jesse Armstrong at the event (via Variety). “There was a big meeting that was like, ‘Do you need this?’ And I was like, ‘Everything in me needs this.’
“They were like, ‘What do you even mean? What is a dream ballet?’ And I was like, ‘A dream ballet? Where do I begin!’”
Gerwig said the sequence, which is soundtracked by the song ‘I’m Just Ken’ written by Mark Ronson and Andrew Wyatt, was inspired by 1952’s Singin’ In The Rain which featured a “dream ballet inside of a dream ballet”.
“I was like, if people could follow that in Singin’ In The Rain, I think we’ll be fine,” Gerwig said. “I think people will know what this is. So that was the big reference point.
“Even though everything felt right to me and was giving me so much joy in the way we were doing it, it was also like, ‘Oh no, this could be just terrible, but now I’m committed.’”
Barbie has become the highest-grossing movie of the year worldwide so far, and the highest-grossing film ever by a female director.
In a four-star review, NME wrote: “What follows is a nuanced, rose-tinted comedy adventure, set to a stonking pop soundtrack featuring Lizzo and Billie Eilish, that somehow lives up to the immense hype. To borrow a pun from Ken’s coolest jacket (out of a long lineup), Barbie is more than ‘kenough’.”