Illawarra businesses are the latest to reap the rewards of ‘Barbie-mania’, as Greta Gerwig‘s 2023 film has continued to break records and increase community engagement.

Since the movie was released in cinemas three weeks ago (20 July 2023), the film’s marketing strategies and collaborations with Australian brands have promoted merchandise and contributed to the local economy, which has welcomed crowds that have been absent since before the pandemic.

Grill’d Shellharbour employee Jade McEvoy said the Barbie Dreamburger has been a huge success in bringing money back into the region’s hospitality industry.

“We have actually had the biggest days that I’ve seen since [before] the pandemic, we have been doing, like, really big days,” Ms McEvoy said.

“Even weekdays have picked up a lot…  The promotional deal is going really well and lots of people are coming in [for it] specifically.”

Also benefitting business-wise is Hoyts Warrawong, which has been flooded with customers.

Cinema manager Jonathan Loustos said the small events and hospitality branch has been overwhelmed by audiences much larger than initially projected.

“The numbers that we expected have just completely been blown through the roof,” Mr Loustos said.

“It’s been nonstop!”

More brands are opting to “go pink” and join in on the craze, welcoming the business the Barbie name brings along with it.

From buying bubble tea at Wollongong’s Chatime to trying on Crocs at Shellharbour’s Universal Store, Barbie-mania has continued to take over local communities, one product at a time.