“Barbenheimer”, the viral phenomenon that led millions of spectators to flock to cinemas to see, on the same day, the films “Oppenheimer”, by Christopher Nolan, and “Barbie”, by Greta Gerwig, is being criticized. If in the West, the association between these two totally different films was seen with humor, the same did not happen in Japanthe country where the atomic bombs of Hiroshima and Nagasaki were dropped, which did not like to see the tragedy associated with the pink world of the Mattel doll — which has already led to an apology from the film’s producer, Warner Bros.
“Oppenheimer”, a solemn historical drama about the man responsible for creating the atomic bomb, and “Barbie”, a satirical comedy with a feminist vein about the famous children’s doll, couldn’t be more different. However, it was precisely these differences that ended up uniting the two films in the minds of film buffs. Something that did not go unnoticed by the marketing campaigns for both films.with social networks serving as the stage for various jokes and humorous exchanges of pennants on both sides.
It was precisely this fact that motivated the criticism coming from Japanese territory, with several people taking a bad look at what they say is the trivialization of the bombings, that killed more than 200,000 people and continue to be a national trauma. The controversy even gave rise to the hashtag #NoBarbenheimer, widely shared over the last few weeks on Japanese social networks, with several Internet users criticizing the connection between the two films and promising to boycott “Barbie” when the film is released in Japan.
The controversy reached its peak this Tuesday, when the Japanese Twitter account responsible for promoting Barbie in the country shared a statement in which he criticized the American counterpart for responding to and encouraging various humorous publications that associated the two works:
— Movie “Barbie” Official (@BarbieMovie_jp) July 31, 2023
We find the reaction by the official US account for the movie ‘Barbie’ to this fan-organized movement to be extremely regrettable. We take this matter very seriously and urge the US leadership to take appropriate action. We apologize to those who were offended by these thoughtless actions.”
The publication had an effect, with Warner Bros leadership issuing a “sincere apology” to the Japanese public for the way in which the “Barbie” advertising campaigns were conducted, assuring that the company “regrets recent insensitive posts on social media. ”. Controversial publications on the film’s North American account were, however, deleted..
Despite the controversy, the two films continue to conquer audiences in the rest of the world. So far, Greta Gerwig’s film has earned more than €700 million worldwide, while Christopher Nolan’s has grossed nearly €400 million. It now remains to be seen whether “Barbie” will be able to repeat its box office success when it arrives in Japan, where it opens on August 11.