Barbie, Greta Gerwig's candy-coated romp, is reportedly getting a digital release on September 5. As per Variety, the film will be available to stream as video-on-demand on the US-based Amazon Prime Video store at $24.99 (about Rs. 2,076). During the pre-order period, we're presented with three main quality options, albeit they're all listed at the same price — an SD (standard definition) version, 1080p full-HD, and an Ultra-HD print, with no mention of subtitles in the description. No regional language dubs are mentioned, though going by how the theatrical release was handled, I highly doubt a Hindi version will be available when sites worldwide get updated.
The India-based Prime Video store hasn't listed Barbie, but going by recent, successful Warner Bros. releases, we can predict what the price might be. DC Comics' The Flash is the closest one, currently listed at Rs. 499 to rent and has no options for owning them digitally. This isn't uncommon for most Prime Video VOD releases in India, with even Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse only available for rent. Hopefully, Barbie eventually makes it to better-suited platforms such as YouTube Movies and Apple TV+ so that you can purchase them at a fair amount. That said, when it heads to Indian digital stores, expect something within the price bracket of Rs. 499 to Rs. 650. If you're willing to wait longer, the film will eventually make it to streaming services (perhaps in November), dropping on JioCinema in India and Max (previously, HBO Max) wherever available.
Meanwhile, the overtly pink fantasy film has been killing it at the box office, grossing $1.2 billion (about Rs. 9,969 crore) and setting a new milestone for Gerwig, who became the first-ever woman director to join the billion-dollar club. Of course, we cannot help but partly attribute its success to the ‘Barbenheimer' phenomenon, a movie event conceptualised by netizens when Barbie's release date clashed with Christopher Nolan's Oppenheimer's. This resulted in a barrage of memes surrounding the juxtaposing themes of the two movies, fan-made merch, and outlandish poster edits. In India, between the two, Oppenheimer took the lead, recently breaking the Rs. 100 crore mark, while Barbie continued to show its prowess globally. In all fairness, it also didn't help that the film never received a Hindi-language dub.
Prior to its digital release, Barbie will continue to flourish in theatres, charting a fantastical tale of the titular doll (Margot Robbie), who starts to become sentient and leaves the bright and oversaturated Barbie Land, for a trip to the mundane real world where she faces an existential crisis. Joining her on the crusade is the always-on Ken (Ryan Gosling), who is on a mission to woo her and in time, comes to terms with his self-worth and identity. The film also stars America Ferrera (Ugly Betty) as a human Mattel employee Gloria, Will Ferrell (Stepbrothers) as the fictional Mattel CEO, Kate McKinnon (Bombshell) as Weird Barbie, Issa Rae (Vengeance) as President Barbie, and Hari Nef (The Idol) as Doctor Barbie.
Barbie is now playing in theatres worldwide. It will be available to watch digitally through video-on-demand on September 5.
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