Daniel Kaluuya will produce a new Barney movie for Mattel that is surrealistic and about Millennial angst, aimed at adults.

New Barney Movie in Works Will Be ‘Surrealistic’ and About ‘Millennial Angst’

From the same The New Yorker feature that revealed Greta Gerwig is tackling The Chronicles of Narnia, it was explained that actor Daniel Kaluuya (Get Out) is producing a new Barney movie, but it will be “surrealistic” and tackle “Millennial angst,” among other things. Mattel Films executive Kevin McKeon explained broadly what to expect, and it sounds not very Barney, comparing it to the works of Charlie Kaufman and Spike Jonze.

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“We’re leaning into the (M)illennial angst of the property rather than fine-tuning this for kids,” McKeon said. “It’s really a play for adults. Not that it’s R-rated, but it’ll focus on some of the trials and tribulations of being thirtysomething, growing up with Barney—just the level of disenchantment within the generation.” He elaborated to The New Yorker that Barney would be an “A24”-style movie, and “It would be so daring of us, and really underscore that we’re here to make art.” Although, Daniel Kaluuya himself declined to comment on the film’s development.

This surrealistic and Millennial angst-ridden Barney movie comes alongside of a broader revival of the Barney IP announced back in February, which will bring a new animated series, plus music and YouTube videos, in 2024. So it sounds like Mattel wants to create a new generation of Barney fans on the small screen while milking some more dollars out of people who watched the original show on the big screen.

Personally, having been born in 1989, I was all about Barney. I saw Barney perform at Universal Studios Florida! We were tight! And I have absolutely zero interest in seeing Barney in a film about Millennial angst. Just none. I don’t even want CG-animated Barney on TV. I just want a man in a big purple dinosaur suit to tell everyone that he loves them and to spread the message, in a very Mr. Rogers style.


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John Friscia
Former Managing Editor at The Escapist. I have been writing about video games since 2018 and editing writing on IT, project management, and video games for around a decade. I have an English degree, but Google was a more valuable learning resource. I taught English in South Korea for a year in 2018, and it was exponentially more fun than living in Pennsylvania. My major passions in life are SNES, Japanese RPGs, Berserk, and K-pop. I'm currently developing the game Boss Saga with my brother, which is guaranteed to change your life and you should buy it.