Doll celebrates the late Asian-American actress.

License Global

May 1, 2023

2 Min Read
Anna May Wong doll.
Anna May Wong doll. Mattel

In celebration of Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month, Barbie is celebrating actress, Anna May Wong, with its first Asian American doll in Barbie’s Inspiring Women series – an ongoing doll line that pays tribute to historical and present-day female role models to inspire future generations of girls through doll play.  

Breaking down stereotypes and typecasts for Asian actors, Anna May Wong made history as the first Asian-American to lead a U.S. television show. Her impact on film and TV was monumental for her time, enabling many children to see someone who looked like them on the big screen.  

“As the first Asian-American actor to lead a U.S. television show, whose perseverance broke down barriers for her gender and AAPI community in film and TV, Anna May Wong is the perfect fit for our Barbie Inspiring Women Series,” says Lisa McKnight, executive vice president and global head, Barbie and dolls, Mattel “We’re thrilled to share the journey of an incredible icon who was at the forefront of inclusive progress in Hollywood. In commemorating her legacy with an Inspiring Women doll in her honor, we are proud to continue to increase representation in the toy aisle.” 

Details of the dress featured on the Anna May Wong doll.

Barbie worked with Anna May Wong’s niece, Anna Wong, to sculpt a doll in proper reflection of her likeness and to ensure it sufficiently captured her legacy. 

“I’ve always been proud of my aunt’s impact on Hollywood and her strength to break down roadblocks in the way of her goals,” says Wong. “She helped more Asian-American see themselves on screen, leading to other incredible feats for the AAPI community. The Barbie Anna May Wong Inspiring Women doll is an incredible tribute to my aunt that will share her legacy with even more people, and I can’t wait to see her doll on shelves.”  

The Inspiring Women Series debuted in 2018 and has paid tribute to a diverse lineup of women including Dr. Maya Angelou, Amelia Earhart, Dr. Jane Goodall, Helen Keller, Eleanor Roosevelt, Frida Kahlo, Rosa Parks, Sally Ride, Billie Jean King, Ella Fitzgerald and Florence Nightingale.  

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