Two Latinas Among Honorees of Mattel’s Women’s Day Doll Collection

Barbie created dolls in honor of role models including Indigenous activist Maira Gomez from Brazil and director, producer and screenwriter Lila Avilés from Mexico

Maira Gomez Lila Avilés Mattel dolls

Credit: Mattel | Courtesy

This past year has been all about Barbie because of the massively successful eponymous film and now the iconic doll is celebrating 65 years. In honor of this milestone Mattel is celebrating with a collection of dolls inspired by global role models to coincide with International Women’s Day. Barbie created one-of-a-kind dolls made in the likeness Indigenous activist Maira Gomez from Brazil and director, producer and screenwriter Lila Avilés from Mexico; Rounding out the collection are dolls inspired by actress Viola Davis (U.S.), singer Shania Twain (Canada), actress Dame Helen Mirren (U.K.), singer Kylie Minogue (Australia), model Nicole Fujita (Japan), comedian Enissa Amani (Germany). “This Barbie is more than a trophy for me; it’s like my Oscar,” Avilés told Mexico’s newspaper Milenio. “I love what I do very much, and I hope I can continue on this path to inspire many more women.”

She is an award-winning film producer, having won more than 30 international festivals and whose movies have a strong reception from international critics, according to Mattel. The 42-year-old filmmaker is the director of the acclaimed film The Chambermaid (2018) and her most recent film, Tótem (2023), which was among the long list of the Best International Feature category at the Oscars.

Avilés spoke with Variety about being among the women selected as an “incredible, beautiful and surreal surprise. It is not only me who the doll is honoring, but my entire career,” she added.

Meanwhile, Gomez also celebrated her doll on Instagram writing, “Tribute to inspiring women.” During the pandemic, Gomez, aka Cunhaporanga, posted videos about the customs of her community within the Tatuyo in the Amazon jungle and grew a following for giving people a view into a community that very little is known about. Known as Cunhaporanga, which means “beautiful woman from the village” in Tupi, the main objective of her content is to present the culture and traditions of her people and share her daily lives and those of her community, Mattel states on their website.

Creating the dolls in each role model’s likeness takes months and is fully collaborative with the role models themselves getting a say on how their doll will look. Avilés’ doll holds a video camera and headphones and dressed in casual wear.

Photo: Mattel

Gomez’s doll dons traditional attire and her face paint along with jewelry inspired by the land featuring feathers and colorful stones.

The dolls are not available for sale and are gift to the role models.

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Barbie Lila Avilés Maira Gomez Mattel
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