Mattel puts end to search for real-life Barbie

A CAMPAIGN to find Australia’s real-life Barbie has been shut down by the iconic doll’s creators.

The Sunday Mail has learnt that an Australian licensee of Mattel has been given a dressing down after issuing a casting call without the permission of the plastic doll’s international manufacturer.

The advertisement, which bore the Mattel name, called for tanned Queensland women, size six to 10, and 25 years or under, to apply for the role. The successful candidate was also required to have Barbie’s trademark blonde locks, be no shorter than 170cm, have a perfect face and teeth, and be able to speak with an American accent.

“You will need to have the right personality to become Mattel’s Barbie,” the casting call said.

It was issued on online audition noticeboard StarNow on September 18 but pulled last week after Mattel Australia was contacted by The Sunday Mail.

Gretta Addison of Mattel Australia said the casting call had been issued by a licensee partner.

“This was not posted by Mattel. It was a partner of Mattel who manages specific promotions and we are working with them to understand why this was posted,” Ms Addison said.

“And, in fact, when we cast Barbie models around the world, while we do look for young women and men to play Barbie and Ken who have some resemblance to the local image, we are looking for clever, fun actors who relate to children and understand how to interpret the brand.”

In place of the advertisement was a one line message: This listing has been temporarily removed by StarNow staff for further review.

The popular plastic fashion doll was launched by Mattel in 1959 and her “life” has been controversial. She has been criticised for promoting an unrealistic body image for young women with estimates putting her body mass index at 16.24, anorexic by health standards.

 

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