In the past few years, Barbie has created many new diverse dolls representing different cultures and backgrounds, including several Latina dolls inspired by Celia Cruz, Julia Alvarez, and Frida Kahlo. As the media frenzy for the recent Barbie movie dies down, Latina Barbie fans were excited to find out that Mattel released another new Barbie doll inspired by iconic Mexican actress Maria Félix. The doll, which has already sold out, commemorates the beloved actress who took the film industry in Mexico by storm in the ‘40s and ‘50s, considered the Golden Era of Mexican cinema.
The María Félix Barbie doll, released on August 15 as part of their Tribute Collection, sports a glittery gold and black dress with gold accessories and details as well as black gloves and a tulle scarf. Filipina Carlyle Nuera, Lead Designer for Barbie Signature at Mattel, created the doll, making sure to include the actress’ iconic arched right eyebrow, beauty mark, and curly black hair.
“I honed in on her fierce but classic glamour, studying the kinds of gowns she wore, her statement jewelry, her fierce arched eyebrows. I designed the gown to be a gold lamé fabric, a reference to María being an icon of the Golden Age of Mexican Cinema,” Nuera wrote in an Instagram post. “We worked directly with the Estate of Maria Felix, sending samples of skin tones, digital renderings of her face sculpt, photos of every prototype stage. They were truly lovely to work with. They consulted on the nuances of her face sculpt and paint to make this María Felix Barbie as authentic as possible.”
Known by dedicated fans as “La Doña,” Félix was born on April 8, 1914 in Álamos, Mexico. She rose to fame in 1943 after her first film appearance in El Peñón de las Ánima. With subsequent films like Doña Bárbara, La Mujer Sin Alma (The Soulless Woman), and La Mujer de Todos (Everyone’s Woman), Félix became cemented as one of the most notable actresses in Mexican and Latin American film history and in total starred in 47 films. Félix died in 2002 in her sleep on her 88th birthday in Mexico City, but her legacy lives on and paved the way for more Latina cinema stars to come.
“An incomparable beauty with ambition, intelligence, drive, and a social conscience, María Félix was a Méxican movie star whose performances in international films captivated audiences across the world,” the Mattel Creations site reads. “She used her fame and influence to advocate for positive change across Méxican and Latin societies. Barbie honors this cultural icon with a doll that glimmers in an elegant gold and black gown and shines with ornate oversized jewelry.”
The María Félix doll, which includes a certificate of authenticity and a stand, is currently sold out.