Barbie: Which countries have banned the movie?

Which countries have chosen to ban the Barbie movie after deeming its content to be "damaging" and "inappropriate"?

Emma Mackey, Simu Liu, Margot Robbie, Ryan Gosling and Kingsley Ben-Adir in Barbie. (Warner Bros.)
The Barbie movie has been banned in Algeria. (Warner Bros.)

Algeria has become the latest country to ban the Barbie movie – reportedly deeming it to portray "damaging morals".

Greta Gerwig's deep but funny feminist parody of the famous doll starring Margot Robbie has broken box office records around the world and has already made over $1bn US dollars (£784m) after opening in 70 territories on 21 July, rated 12A.

But several countries have chosen to ban cinemas for showing the film.

Watch: Barbie movie banned in Algeria

According to Algerian news website 24H the predominantly Muslim North African country has now chosen impose a ban three weeks after Barbie was released in the territory.

Read more: Is Barbie suitable for kids?

The Ministry of Culture and the Arts reportedly sent notifications to cinemas that were showing the film ordering it to be removed "immediately" from their schedules, as well to the film's distributor in Algeria MD Cine.

The official reason for the ban was given as "damaging morals".

Barbie has now been officially banned in several nations.

United Arab Emirates

(L-r) KINGSLEY BEN-ADIR, RYAN GOSLING as Ken and NCUTI GATWA in Warner Bros. Pictures’ “BARBIE,” a Warner Bros. Pictures release.
The Barbie movie starrinf Ryan Gosling as Ken explores the patriarchy. (Warner Bros)

Originally UAE said it was not releasing the Barbie Movie – which explores the rule of the patriarchy and women's right to equality and the vote – because it was seen as violating Islamic values.

However, this decision was overturned, with the media council stating: "The UAE Media Council has granted the Barbie movie the approval to be screened in the UAE’s licensed cinemas after completing the necessary procedures in line with the standards of media content and the UAE age classification."

Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia originally ordered the film could not be shown in cinemas as it was inappropriate for its audiences. However it was eventually released, although it is believed LGBTQ+ content has been removed.

Ryan Gosling and Margot Robbie in Barbie. (Warner Bros.)
The Barbie movie was deemed to violate Islamic values. (Warner Bros.)


Vietnam banned the Barbie movie over a controversial map of the South China Sea included in the film.

Read more: NFSW movie posters that got banned

The movie features Margot Robbie standing in front of a childish depiction of World Map which some have alleged depicts the “nine-dash line” – a maritime border rejected by the Permanent Court of Arbitration at The Hague, but continuously promoted by China to claim virtually all of the South China Sea.


The film was almost banned in the Philippines for the same reason, but after a two week review its release was permitted.


(center) MARGOT ROBBIE as Barbie in Warner Bros. Pictures’ “BARBIE,” a Warner Bros. Pictures release.
The Barbie movie was banned in Pakistan for "objectionable content". (Warner Bros)

Pakistan issued a temporary ban on the film, while it assessed the level of what it called "objectionable content". This was believed to be in relation to the movie's LGBTQ+ themes.

Read more: Barbie passes $1bn at the box office: The highest grossing films directed by women

Farrukh Mahmood, secretary of the Punjab Film Censor Board said in a statement: "There will be a full review of the film, and it will be censored where deemed necessary."


Kuwait announced it was banning the adventures of Barbie and Ken in the real world due to "ideas and beliefs that are alien to the Kuwaiti society and public order."


Lebanon's culture minister Mohammad Mortada said Barbie was being prohibited from being screened in cinemas because it contradicts "moral and religious values as well as the principles of Lebanon" and "promotes homosexuality and sexual transformation."

He added the film "promotes sexual deviance and transsexuality".

Watch: Why a map led to Barbie being banned in Vietnam