Warner Bros. Discovery's 'Barbie' Movie Gets Boost From HGTV 'Barbie Dreamhouse'

Warner Bros. Discovery is bringing in the home renovators of HGTV to play a part in the company’s all-out promotion blitz for its big summer “Barbie” movie.

The movie, starring Margot Robbie as a live-action version of the famed, plastic doll, comes out July 21. 

Days before its release on Sunday, July 16, HGTV’s renovation stars will be seen hard at work designing a real-life doll’s house on a new four-part series titled “Barbie Dreamhouse Challenge.”

The promotional synergy here is plain to see. HGTV is owned by WBD, and so is Warner Bros. Pictures, producer of “Barbie.”

A huge promotional push for the movie is already underway. In New York City, outdoor billboards and signage are everywhere, including in that valley of outdoor “spectaculars,” Times Square.



The TV show turns the “Barbie” promotion volume up to 11. “It’s the renovation competition the entire planet has been waiting for!” says an offscreen voice in the first introductory moments of Episode One of “Barbie Dreamhouse Challenge.”

Wow! The entire planet! For the record, the TV Blog loves this kind of stuff. The same off-screen voice positions the arrival of the TV show as “just in time for the mega blockbuster movie ‘Barbie’!”

Since the movie is not out yet, the phrase “mega blockbuster” represents the company’s hopes for the movie once it gets released. Whether or not these hopes will be realized is anybody’s guess.

If the movie falls short of the company’s goals, no one can blame HGTV.

Its new show is a love letter to the Barbie phenomenon in every way.

In the show, pairs of HGTV home renovators are each assigned to design a section of a home in the style of the Barbie dream homes that have long been a part of the Mattel Barbie merchandise universe.

Each team will have to design their section in conformity with the styles of a specific decade in the life of Barbie, who was first introduced in 1959.

"Days before the hotly anticipated release of the Warner Bros. Pictures film 'Barbie,' HGTV will unveil its epic, life-size renovations of the iconic Mattel toy, Barbie® Dreamhouse [® added by HGTV], creating the biggest, boldest and most whimsical home of all time in its newest competition series, ‘Barbie Dreamhouse Challenge'," says an HGTV press release.

“The biggest, boldest and most whimsical home of all time”? It’s a phrase Muhammad Ali could have written. And that’s a compliment, not a complaint.

Make no mistake: The house that is to be designed and reconfigured to encompass at least four decades of Barbie dream homes is a real house. 

WBD bought it expressly for this show. It’s pictured above, along with the HGTV stars who will redesign it from top to bottom.

Hosted by model Ashley Graham, the HGTV stars include Egypt Sherrod and Mike Jackson of “Married to Real Estate,” Jasmine Roth (“Help! I Wrecked My House”) and Food Network’s Antonio Lofaso (“Beachside Brawl”), and Ty Pennington of “Rock the Block” and the tireless Alison Victoria of “Windy City Rehab.”

Also on hand: Jonathan Knight and Kristina Crestin (“Farmhouse Fixer”), Keith Bynum and Evan Thomas (“Bargain Block”), Brian and Mika Kleinschmidt (“100 Day Dream Home”), Christina Hall and James Bender (“Christina On the Coast”), and Michel Smith Boyd and Anthony Elle Williams (“Luxe for Less”).

“Barbie Dreamhouse Challenge” is the latest in what has become quite a collection of renovation competition shows in the HGTV portfolio.

It’s a strategy taken from the playbook of Food Network, whose cooking competitions have been turning the preparation of food into blood sport for years.

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