“Barbenheimer” fever has not only lit up the box office. It’s also lit up social media. For months, people simply couldn’t believe that two very different movies were being released on the same day — despite this once being a very, very common thing for decades and decades. But not everyone thinks all the memes are funny, and for a very good reason.
As per Deadline, Warner Bros. Japan issued a statement lamenting that the Barbie Twitter account, part of the Warner Bros. Discovery fold, has been reacting favorably to some of the Barbenheimer memes. One such memes finds Margot Robbie’s Barbie Photoshopped alongside Cillian Murphy’s J. Robert Oppenheimer amidst an atomic bomb explosion. The Barbie account replied, “It’s going to be a summer to remember.”
It's going to be a summer to remember 😘💕
— Barbie Movie (@barbiethemovie) July 21, 2023
Those at Warner Bros. Japan (very understandably) don’t think jokes about mushroom clouds decimating Hiroshima and Nagasaki are very funny.
“We consider it extremely regrettable that the official account of the American headquarters for the movie ‘Barbie’ reacted to the social media postings of ‘Barbenheimer’ fans,” the translated statement reads. “We take this situation very seriously. We are asking the U.S. headquarters to take appropriate action. We apologize to those who were offended by this series of inconsiderate reactions. Warner Bros Japan.”
The statement went viral, as did the hashtag “#NoBarbenheimer.”
Oppenheimer has not yet been released in Japan, but if it does get a release date it may be a tricky sell. It should be noted that the latest from Christopher Nolan is by no means funny nor does it handle the issue lightly. Like most Nolan films, it contains no jokes. Nolan has not exactly shared in all the “Barbenheimer” revelry.