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AMC says 20,000 people have booked to see the Barbenheimer double feature

Who wins in the Barbie and Oppenheimer war? Both.

Barbie (Margot Robbie) and Ken (Ryan Gosling) sing in the Barbiemobile out of Barbie land in Barbie Image: Warner Bros. Pictures
Ana Diaz (she/her) is a culture writer at Polygon, covering internet culture, fandom, and video games. Her work has previously appeared at NPR, Wired, and The Verge.

Barbie and Oppenheimer seem to be proving the old saying: opposites attract. A week and a half out from both movies’ July 21 release, their combined magnetic pull is reportedly bringing in loads of people to the theater for a novel movie-going experience.

Just how many exactly? We’ll have more exact numbers when the movies are actually out, but there’s already an early sign of interest: According to AMC, 20,000 of its Stubs members have already booked the two movies back to back.

Barbie, of course, is a movie inspired by the popular toys created by Mattel. Directed by Greta Gerwig (Lady Bird), the toy adaptation stars Margot Robbie as Barbie and an aloof Ryan Gosling as Ken. The movie drips in bright pink shades and pastel hues its source material is known for, whereas Oppenheimer, the latest from The Dark Knight director Christopher Nolan, takes on a much darker tone. The docudrama explores the life of J. Robert Oppenheimer, inventor of the atomic bomb.

Collectively, the two movies have come to be known by fans as, “Barbenheimer.” It’s a double feature for the ages and led some fans to question which movie they want to see. Do summer movies goers indulge in the shenanigans of the himbo Ken, or do they opt for war-drama like Oppenheimer? In response to the conundrum, fans have shared memes illustrating the difficult choice, or have made jokes about their resolve to go to both.

Now we know that all of those jokes are actually translating into real-life theater as people book both movies.

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