Move Over, Malibu Barbie: ‘Selma’ Director Gets Her Own Doll

What’s the best way to honor an accomplished woman? With a Barbie doll, of course!

(Photo: Matel)

Apr 24, 2015· 1 MIN READ
Samantha Cowan is an associate editor for culture.

From the braids to the black turtleneck and the accompanying director’s chair, Mattel’s Barbie doll imitation looks a whole lot like its real-life inspiration: writer and director Ava DuVernay.

DuVernay’s doll is one of six the toy company created to honor the achievements of trailblazing women at the Variety’s Power of Women Luncheon on Friday.

“Barbie recognizes six ‘sheroes,’ female heroes who inspire girls by breaking boundaries and expanding possibilities for women everywhere,” according to the company’s Friday press release.

DuVernay’s lengthy list of accomplishments includes directing the critically acclaimed film Selma, along with founding the African American Film Festival Releasing Movement. DuVernay was also the first African American to win the Sundance Film Festival’s best director award in 2012 for Middle of Nowhere. (Full disclosure: Middle of Nowhere was acquired by TakePart’s parent company, Participant Media.)

Yearwood, (Left), Keiser, Rossum, DuVernay, Chenoweth, Chen (Photo: Matel)

The other women represented include actor and animal rights activist Emmy Rossum, editor in chief of Lucky magazine Eva Chen, Broadway star Kristin Chenoweth, 5-year-old fashion designer Sydney “Mayhem” Keiser, and country singer and author Trisha Yearwood.

Although Barbie has been often critiqued for presenting unrealistic proportions and skimpy outfits to young consumers, the company sees these dolls as a way to represent a broad range of women’s capabilities.

“Barbie has always represented that girls have choices, and this spring we are proud to honor six Sheroes who through their trade and philanthropic efforts are an inspiration to girls,” said Evelyn Mazzocco, the general manager of the Barbie brand, in the release.

Unfortunately, shoppers can’t run out and buy these dolls. Instead the real-life “sheroes” will auction them off to benefit their charity of choice.