How Did Ryan Gosling Shape 'I'm Just Ken' with Monroe Influence?

A dazzling display of creativity at the Oscars unfolds.

by Zain ul Abedin
How Did Ryan Gosling Shape 'I'm Just Ken' with Monroe Influence?
© Kevin Winter/Getty Images

Ryan Gosling transformed the "I'm Just Ken" number from the "Barbie" movie into a show-stopping spectacle at the Oscars, a feat that required a 40-piece orchestra, 62 dancing counterparts, over two dozen massive Barbie heads, a quartet of "cameo Kens", and an unexpected Guns N'Roses cameo.

This meticulously crafted performance not only broke the internet but also set a new standard for award show entertainment. Months of whispers and anticipation finally culminated in late February when it was officially announced that Gosling would grace the Oscars stage with his musical number.

The planning stages, however, began much earlier, involving detailed discussions between Gosling, Oscars producers, and creative forces like Greta Gerwig. The actor's dedication to perfection was evident from the outset, with choreographer Mandy Moore and musician Mark Ronson playing pivotal roles in the conceptualization of the performance.

Ken's Cinematic Homage

Gosling drew inspiration from the iconic "Diamonds Are a Girl's Best Friend" scene in "Gentlemen Prefer Blondes," which influenced the visual feast of the performance—from the pink suit to the strategic use of color contrast and the inclusion of Ken-del Abra men.

Every aspect, including the entrance from the audience, the interaction with key figures like Margot Robbie and Emma Stone, and the culminating kiss to the cameraman's hand, was carefully orchestrated by Gosling to ensure a seamless and engaging experience for everyone involved.

The preparation for this unforgettable Oscars moment started four weeks prior, with Gosling and Moore seeking a unique "movement language" that allowed the actor to sing, dance, and interact with the environment and the audience in real-time.

The inclusion of cameo Kens from the original "Barbie" movie cast, such as Simu Liu and Ncuti Gatwa, added another layer of excitement, despite their last-minute involvement. This performance wasn't just a display of Gosling's versatile talents; it was a collective effort that showcased the dedication and hard work of everyone involved, from the producers to the music director, Rickey Minor, who faced a tight schedule to ensure the musical number was nothing short of spectacular.

As the curtains fell, the reaction from the audience and the overwhelming positive feedback highlighted the success of "I'm Just Ken". Co-stars and celebrities alike were abuzz with praise, calling for Gosling to take his electrifying act beyond the Oscars stage.

The performance was not just a highlight of the evening but a testament to Gosling's commitment to his craft, leaving both the audience and the actor himself wondering what could possibly top this unforgettable Oscars moment.

Ryan Gosling