The Oscar-winning 'Juno' screenwriter previously took a stab at writing a 'Barbie' movie that never came to fruition
The writer, who won the Best Original Screenplay Academy Award back in 2008 for Juno, previously took a stab at writing a Barbie film that never came to fruition. The version that did make a splash in theaters last year, directed and co-written by Greta Gerwig, this week earned eight Oscar nominations, including for Best Picture.
Still, Gerwig being left out of the Best Director category and Margot Robbie's absence in the Best Actress race were considered snubs by fans.
"Here's what I'm going to say. Obviously, of course I think Greta deserved a nomination and so did Margot," Cody, 45, tells PEOPLE. "But they made a billion dollars on that movie, okay? I would trade my Oscar for a billion-dollar movie right now, if I could flip a switch! Sorry if that's disrespectful to the Academy."
Among this year's nominees, Gerwig was recognized in the Best Adapted Screenplay category with husband Noah Baumbach for writing Barbie, which was the No. 1 film at the 2023 box office, grossing over $1.4 billion worldwide. Plus, Robbie is a nominee in the Best Picture field as one of the producers.
"They made a billion dollars and they got eight nominations across the board," Cody says. "Margot got nominated as a producer, which I think, knowing what she has been trying to do in her career, I feel like that must've been incredibly satisfying for her. And Greta created a phenomenon."
"I'm telling you, that was a tough project," says Cody, whose next film is the teen horror-romance Lisa Frankenstein. "Having worked on [a Barbie project] made me respect it all the more, because that is a very challenging property to take and turn into something real. And they did it."
"So you could call it a snub, but I think that what they achieved is probably bigger than those individual nominations," she adds.
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In an interview with GQ last year, Cody reflected on her Barbie project that was originally set to star Amy Schumer in the titular role. She admitted she "s--- the bed" on the assignment because she felt that in 2014 "taking this skinny blonde White doll and making her into a heroine was a tall order."
She recalled that the studio "wanted a girl-boss feminist twist on Barbie, and I couldn’t figure it out because that’s not what Barbie is."
Cody tells PEOPLE winning her Oscar 16 years ago "definitely changed my life, and it's still a cool fact to have on your Wikipedia page."
"But I always say in this business, people are always onto the next," she adds. "So you get to be the prom queen for the year, and then it's like, 'Alright, what else you got?' You can't coast on it forever, unfortunately."
Lisa Frankenstein is in theaters Feb. 9.
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