Ava DuVernay’s limited-edition Barbie doll sold out in just one hour earlier this week.
In a telephone interview on Tuesday’s Good Morning America, the Selma director gushed over having a doll with her likeness.
DuVernay said that while she was a “big Barbie girl growing up,” none of the ones she had “looked like me.”
“So with the opportunity to create a doll who had brown skin and natural hair and was directing her own movie, that was an incredible opportunity, so I went for it,” DuVernay said of her motivation to help design a doll that looked like her.
— The FADER (@thefader) December 8, 2015
She to GMA that her favorite features of the doll were Barbie’s hair and a director’s chair that accompanied the doll.
“The natural hairstyle was very important to me. I think that’s something that should be celebrated — the differences in all of us. With so much rhetoric about collapsing who we are, it’s about expansion and celebrating everyone,” DuVernay said. “And then the chair was my favorite thing, because it took me a long time to earn that chair. So I wanted every girl and boy to have one.”
DuVernay said she hoped the doll would inspire people to accept different images in storytelling.
“Everyone should be able to see themselves. That’s really what my point is in doing this. Images and balance in storytelling, our imagination, is something that should be embraced and widened and expanded,” she said. “So that’s what I’m hoping this does: Changes the view of who we think a director can be, changes the view of who we think a Barbie should look like.”
Unfortunately, those who were hoping more DuVernay Barbie’s would be forthcoming are out of luck.
Mattel’s social media team kept busy on Tuesday, tweeting an explanation for the limited number of dolls to disappointed consumers. “Our Platinum Label dolls are highly collectible. These dolls tend to sell out quickly & this one is no exception,” the company wrote on Twitter.
“It was always supposed to be a limited run. It was only supposed to be one doll, and it was by popular demand that it was expanded. So it was a short-term celebration, but a good thing,” Ana DuVernay said.