May 21, 2024

Japan calls Barbenheimer tweets “regrettable”

Published: 2023-08-01T09:09:36

  ❘   Updated: 2023-08-01T09:09:46

Warner Bros Japan has attacked its American counterpart, calling the Barbenheimer tweets and memes posted by Warner Bros America “extremely regrettable.”

Barbenheimer has dominated the celluloid conversation this summer. Greta Gerwig’s Barbie and Christopher Nolan’s Oppenheimer released in US and UK cinemas on the same day, which meant filmgoers had to pick a side.

But then something strange happened. Fans decided they didn’t have to choose, and instead booked tickets for both movies to watch them back-to-back, and so “Barbenheimer” was born. Which in turn drove the box office of both films up, turning toy movie and bomb movie into bona fide blockbusters.

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But the fact that Oppenheimer concerns the destruction of Hiroshima and Nagasaki at the tail-end of WWII means that Nolan’s film is yet to receive a release date in Japan. While the team responsible for marketing Barbie in Japan has been none-too-happy with the films being lumped together for marketing purposes.

Japan calls Warner Bros’ Barbenheimer tweets “regrettable”

The Barbie movie’s Japanese Twitter account has posted a statement condemning the Barbenheimer jokes. Here’s what they wrote (as translated by The Guardian):

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“Because the movies Barbie and Oppenheimer were both released in the US on July 21, there is currently a movement driven by overseas fans to watch them together (#Barbenheimer), but this is not an official movement.

“We find the reaction to this fan-driven movement from the official US account for the movie Barbie to be extremely regrettable. We take this very seriously and are asking the US head office to take appropriate action… [and] apologise to those offended by these inconsiderate actions.”

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The hashtag “#NoBarbemnheimer” has been trending in Japan over the last week. While Twitter has even felt the need to post a community note underneath a message that’s since been deleted by Warner Bros.

Below an image of Barbie being carried away from flames by Oppenheimer, the note puts the picture in historical context by stating: “At 8:15 a.m. on August 6, 1945 (Showa 20), an atomic bomb was dropped on Hiroshima for the first time in human history. The particular nature of the damage caused by the atomic bombs is that mass destruction and mass murder occurred instantaneously and indiscriminately.”

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Barbie is due to be released in Japan in August, when we’ll see if the country’s displeasure at those jokes translates into audiences staying home. While we’ll update this article if we have any news about Oppenheimer’s Japanese release.

For more on Barbie click here. While for more Oppenheimer head here.

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