It was surprising, but also intriguing, when it was announced that Amy Schumer would play Barbie in a live-action film adaptation of the iconic Mattel toy. In a culture that criticizes the propagation of unrealistic beauty standards, Schumer was a clever, subversive choice to play a doll that’s long represented corporate ideas of femininity. Unfortunately, it looks like her involvement has come to an end. According to Variety, the actress is parting with the production due to “scheduling conflicts.”
“Sadly, I’m no longer able to commit to Barbie due to scheduling conflicts,” Schumer said in a statement. “The film has so much promise, and Sony and Mattel have been great partners. I’m bummed, but look forward to seeing Barbie on the big screen.”
Those conflicts likely center around the promotional tour for her upcoming comedy Snatched, as well as filming for She Came to Me, a project she’s starring in alongside Steve Carell. Furthermore, Variety says the Barbie production schedule and June 29th, 2018 release date couldn’t be compromised due to previous merchandising agreements with Mattel.
Sony plans to move forward with a script by Hilary Winston, which was previously described as “a contemporary spin on beauty, feminism, and identity” that shares DNA with family-friendly comedies like Splash and Enchanted. In it, Barbie lives in a world of other Barbies, but is banished to our world for daring to be different.
Schumer apparently did a pass on the screenplay, though it’s unclear whether her revisions will remain in the finished script. Probably not, one would imagine, as her comedic voice is so uniquely her own.