New empowering theme recognises how girls engage with superhero differently than boys

Barbie super hero Kara - NZ DadsFor the first time in the brand’s 56-year history, Barbie™ is pulling out a cape and mask and transforming into a modern day superhero. Understanding that girls are looking for a different resolution than boys from ‘superhero play’, Mattel has put Barbie™ in a role that inspires girls to be super themselves.

Lori Pantel, Vice President, Global Brand Marketing for Barbie, says “The world of superheroes has largely been tailored to boys where ‘the good guys beat the bad guys.”

“But we know that girls, too, enjoy empowered heroes but seek an outcome where the perceived bad characters transform to good and friendship is the lasting result. We thought it was time they were inspired by a new superhero that is playful, has extraordinary abilities and uses her powers of forgiveness and friendship to defeat her foe – in a way that only Barbie can.”

The super-powered Barbie™ launch kicks off when Barbie™ takes flight as a new hero, but stays grounded by the powers of teamwork and friendship, two critical themes in the way girls look to solve conflict. The supporting DVD entitled Barbie™ in Princess Power marks the 30th Barbie™ animated film release and ignites a new girl empowered digital initiative for fans at www.besuper.com.

A modern-day princess story, Barbie™ stars as Kara, who discovers she has super powers that transform her into Super Sparkle™ – her secret, crime-fighting alter ego who flies around the kingdom ready to save the day. But it’s not long before her jealous cousin catches a magical butterfly and also transforms – this time into Dark Sparkle™, her superhero nemesis.

Their rivalry takes to the skies, but to save the kingdom they must soar to new heights and discover that there’s no greater power than friendship.

To celebrate everyday acts of ‘being super’, Barbie™ fans can visit an all-new digital destination, www.besuper.com. Fans of all ages can engage, create, imagine and share their own ‘super’ stories. A special digital Comic Book Maker for kids empowers girls to create their own superhero stories putting Barbieinto all new roles as girls define the end result. Fans can also watch weekly animated episodes demonstrating Barbie and her friends performing acts of being super. Fans can tag #BeSuper to share and celebrate what ‘being super’ means to them on Barbie™ web and social platforms (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter). Finally, a parent section for grown-ups helps inspire their child to ‘be super’ every day.

“You don’t have to be a superhero to do something extraordinary,” says Pantel. “By celebrating the everyday moments, we can all realise the superhero inside of us.”

The Barbie™ in Princess Power Super Sparkle™ dolls include a Kara® and Corinne® doll – allowing girls to create their own superpower fun at home! Always a princess, the Kara® doll comes in a pink gown with full skirt and sheer peplum making her suitable for any occasion. When danger calls, push the gem on her bodice to see her spin and transform from a princess into her heroic alter ego, Super Sparkle™! Her skirt opens into a fabulous sparkly cape, a pink skirt, utility belt with hero insignia and tall pink boots complete the fabulous look of this protector of the kingdom. Girls can transform her look over and over again as they play out their own super adventures!

As Barbie’s™ nemesis, the Corinne® doll has a few surprises in store for our hero. To bring her transformation moment to life, press the adorable sparkling butterfly on her shoulder to hear a kiss followed by a magical glistening sound and watch her glittery bodice flash with coloured lightning bolts, transforming her into Dark Sparkle.

Barbie™ fans will also be able to act, imagine and story tell their super adventures with a new line of consumer products and publishing. The Five Mile Press will release a complete collection of Barbie™ in Princess Power books including early readers, activity, sticker and colouring books.

Girls can also play out superhero adventures with role play collection from Hunter Leisure. Each crime-fighting costume accessory set, including a Princess Kara Cape and Mask and Princess Kara Dress, is made of shimmery fabrics and features a glittery Princess Power emblem as seen in the movie.

Barbie™ in Princess Power is available now on Blu-ray™, DVD and Digital HD at retailers nationwide. The Kara® and Corinne® dolls are available now (RRP $49.99NZD) at retailers nationwide.

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