Shonda Rhimes’ ‘Black Barbie’ Documentary Set to Premiere This Juneteenth on Netflix


May 6, 2024

The premiere will follow Rhimes’ heavily anticipated third season of Bridgerton.

Shonda Rhimes, the powerhouse behind hit shows like Scandal and Bridgerton, is teaming up with Netflix to bring you a documentary celebrating an iconic doll: Black Barbie. Black Barbie: A Documentary is set to premiere on Juneteenth.

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According to an article on Shondaland.com, the documentary, written and directed by Lagueria Davis, dives deep into the creation of the first Black Barbie in 1980. Through first-hand accounts from the three Black women at Mattel who championed its development, the film sheds light on the crucial role of representation in childhood. Expert voices are also woven into the narrative, highlighting academic research on how dolls can shape a child’s self-image and imagination.

This isn’t Rhimes’ first foray into Barbie’s world. A vocal advocate for the brand’s Dream Gap Project, which aims to empower young girls, Rhimes has spoken out about the importance of visibility. “You cannot be what you cannot see,” she stated, emphasizing the power of representation in inspiring girls to chase their dreams.

Black Barbie has already garnered attention. Originally showcased as a work-in-progress at South by Southwest in 2023, the documentary finds its final form under the Shondaland banner. This collaboration promises to deliver even more depth to the story, digging deeper into the impact these Black women had on Barbie’s evolution.


Mark your calendars for Juneteenth and get ready to celebrate the women who shaped the iconic Barbie brand and the enduring impact of representation for young Black girls everywhere.

Cover photo: Shonda Rhimes’ ‘Black Barbie’ Documentary Set to Premiere This Juneteenth on Netflix/ Credit: Netflix

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