Last week, the American girls’ doll brand, Barbie announced that they would be making a one-of-a-kind Zendaya doll modelled from the actress’ look from this year’s Academy Awards.
The doll is modelled on the Disney star’s outfit and hairstyle that caused controversy at the Academy Awards in 2015, due to the now infamous incident featuring presenter, Giuliana Ranic. While hosting E!’s Fashion Police, Ranic stated that the actress’ dreadlocks made her look like she “smells like patchouli oil or maybe weed.” These racially offensive comments about Zendaya led to Ranic having to publicly apologise, in addition to quitting Fashion Police.
The decision for Barbie to make the doll with Zendaya’s likeness is being praised by critics, as it marks a shift in the diverse collection of dolls on the market, straying from the white, blonde dolls we’re all used to seeing. Speaking of the project, Zendaya said: “I’m excited to be a part of the new direction the Barbie brand is headed, specifically how they are celebrating diversity in the line and encouraging kids to raise their voices.”
Presented with the doll at Barbie’s Rock ’N Royals Concert Experience in Los Angeles, Zendaya said that the doll was “perfect” and that “the hair was obviously so important to me. They took their time and they made it perfect.”
Look at the instagram post below to read Zendaya’s personal message to Barbie.