Barbie Goes on a Princess Adventure in September!

After months of speculation about whether the next Barbie movie was undergoing the same virus-related delays as other upcoming princess titles, a new preview went up on YouTube this past Sunday revealing that Barbie Princess Adventure will drop on Netflix on September 1st. The teaser also revealed a first look at some footage from the movie, which is set in the world of Barbie Dreamhouse Adventures and features Barbie and her friends Nikki, Daisy, Renee, and Teresa getting in on all the princess action. It is a rather odd setting for a Princess and the Pauper remake since there aren't that many princesses around today, but I suppose that's where the fantasy elements come into play. What disappointed me the most about the teaser was the complete lack of "new music" they teased in it. However, there have been some leaks of the original soundtrack, which I would describe as poppy and generic.

Barbie Princess Adventure is being promoted as a movie and not a multi-part Dreamhouse Adventures special, which some fans had speculated. The plot looks like a watered down modernization of one of the most popular Barbie movies, The Princess and the Pauper from 2004. This would mark the second remake of that film since 2012 when Barbie also starred in The Princess and the Popstar. Let's not forget Netflix's take on the story in 2018 with The Princess Switch either, showing that the concept has endless versatility. It looks like when Hollywood ran out of ideas a few years ago, Barbie decided to hop on the Disney remake train by recreating their former classics with better technology. Although the animation in Barbie Dreamhouse Adventures is a more fluid than the earlier Barbie movies, I loved the way Princess Anneliese and Erika danced around in their gorgeous gowns in The Princess and the Pauper. The modern princess-inspired knee-length skirts and patterned tees featured in Barbie Princess Adventure simply can't compare to the beautiful fabrics and ribbons decorating the protagonists in its predecessor.

There are other notable differences between Barbie Princess Adventure and its prior remakes as well. It is the first Barbie movie with this plot where Barbie is playing herself, and not an original character that was made up purely for one film. Unlike her lookalikes in the previous two films, Barbie's princess twin in Barbie Princess Adventure has blonde hair, so there is no need for a wig or magic hair-altering jewelry like the girls from The Princess and the Popstar had. The switch seems to take place out of a genuine desire to live each other's lives for a day like Tori and Keira from The Princess and the Popstar and not because of an impending threat to throne like Preminger in The Princess and the Pauper. It appears to have an upbeat overall tone and may not even have a villain. If I had to guess, the biggest obstacle at the end of the movie will probably be some sort of important event that either Barbie or the princess must attend as herself but are placed in a situation where they may not be able to switch back in time.

"Try It On" is our first preview the music from Barbie Princess Adventure. It has a very similar bubblegum pop feel to the Dreamhouse Adventures theme song, "You Can Be Anything," and doesn't sound specific to the plot of the film in the way you would expect from a classic musical. The song emphasizes Barbie's slogan, "Be Anything," by encouraging girls to try out every type of hobby or job they can find. The music video features Barbie with her Dreamhouse Adventures friends and family trying on different uniforms that include everything from a sous chef to a mermaid. The lyrics to the song are so nonspecific that it could just as easily replace the current series theme song. I would worry that the placement of this song might bring the entire movie to a halt just so the main characters can have an excuse to jump around in goofy poses and outfits. "Try It On" is the polar opposite of "I Am a Girl Like You" from The Princess and the Pauper, which contains lyrics that are extremely specific to the story to the point where it blends seamlessly into dialogue on multiple occasions.

I am so glad that the release date of this movie is no longer a giant question mark for fans. We now know for certain that September 1st will be the day we will be able to watch the first new Barbie movie since Dolphin Magic, which premiered almost three years ago. Most fans my age are disappointed that this movie does not feature an original story, but we need to take into consideration that most modern children have not had the pleasure of experiencing Barbie as The Princess and the Pauper or any of the other wonderful fairy tale Barbie movies we grew up with. Since Dreamhouse Adventures is the image that Mattel wants to present for Barbie to the newest generation of girls, it is nice that they will be able to experience the same story we all know and love on September 1st with a few modern-day twists.


PrincessContent said…
I was excited for this movie but I have to say that I had a feeling that this would be one of those movies that just exits to sell toys.

Sure, many of the Barbie movies just exist to sell toys, but some of them, Rapunzel and Princess and the Pauper and more, they have a lot of heart. They have good stories and good music and songs.
I always get so disappointed when toy companies decided to make simple, bland movies to promote their products. What’s actually stopping them from hiring good storytellers? To write a story that can last?

I do not mind that they want to make Barbie a more modern looking princess. But make at least some songs with heart to them and not this safe, bland stuff.
Lisa Dawn said…
I wish they would hire me to work on one of their movies! I actually wrote a spec script for Dreamhouse Adventures to submit to the Nickelodeon Writing Program last year, but I wasn't able to use it because they delayed their submissions and changed the rules on what shows you could submit scripts for. It's a shame because I felt like I captured the spirit of the show pretty well.
PrincessContent said…
Sad that they decided to change the rules. I hope you will get a new change someday to send in a Barbie script! <3

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