Laverne Cox Is Immortalized as a Barbie Doll
Laverne Cox, who starred in Orange Is the New Black and Inventing Anna, gets her own Barbie doll in celebration of her 50th birthday.
Laverne Cox recently celebrated her 50th birthday with her own Barbie doll. The Inventing Anna actress collaborated with Mattel in honor of her work as an actress and as an activist for the LGBTQIA+ community.
In an interview with People, Laverne said of the moment: “What excites me most about her being out in the world is that trans young people can see her and maybe get to purchase her and play with her, and know that there’s a Barbie made by Mattel, for the first time, in the likeness of a trans person.”
In an Instagram post, Laverne added: “There is now a Laverne Cox Barbie doll. Just wow! Thank you to everyone at @mattel for all the love you poured into creating her. And thank you for this moment for the trans and LGBTQ+ community in truly challenging times, particularly for trans kids. I am so deeply humbled. And I hope this doll will be a beacon of hope and possibility for Barbie fans and beyond of all ages.”
Laverne Cox: Representation Matters
Laverne shared how important it was that Mattel got her doll right—in particular, making the doll more African-American.
“We had a conversation about highlights and lowlights because I’m blonde most of the time now. But I’m a Black girl so I need a dark root. And we had a whole conversation about how they can’t do that. But they could do dark lowlights,” Laverne said.
In addition, the doll comes at a time when laws against the LGBTQIA+ have been passed and implemented in certain parts of the US. The actress said that this doll will definitely show people, especially the trans community, that they are not alone.
The doll is also symbolic for Laverne. Back then, she wasn’t allowed to play with Barbie dolls because according to her mom, she was assigned as male by birth. But after talking with a therapist who encouraged her, she was able to get her own Barbie doll and has since been getting Barbie as a gift.
“I’m just so grateful that I’ve been able to be in this process. It’s a process of reclaiming my inner child, healing her, giving her what she didn’t have the first go-round. Giving those things to her now. And Barbie is a very tangible part of that.”
Lisa McKnight, Executive Vice President and Global Head of Barbie and Dolls at Mattel stated that they were very excited in collaborating with Laverne for the doll.
“We are proud to highlight the importance of inclusion and acceptance at every age. And to recognize Laverne’s significant impact on culture with a Tribute Collection Barbie,” she said.
The Laverne Cox doll is now available online and retails stores in the US.