Daniel Kaluuya to Produce and Star in ‘Daring’ Barney Movie for Adults

Daniel Kaluuya and Barney. (Credit: Shutterstock/Hit Entertainment)

Barney, the beloved purple dinosaur from the children’s show Barney & Friends, is set to make a comeback on the big screen — only this time, adults are the intended audience.

Mattel Films has given the green light to a reimagined, adult-focused film titled Barney, which will be both produced by and star Academy Award winner Daniel Kaluuya.

Kevin McKeon, an executive at Mattel, recently told The New Yorker  the target audience for the “daring” new film is people in their thirties who grew up with Barney.

“We’re leaning into the millennial angst of the property rather than fine-tuning this for kids,” McKeon said. “It’s really a play for adults. Not that it’s R-rated, but it’ll focus on some of the trials and tribulations of being 30-something, growing up with Barney — just the level of disenchantment within the generation.”

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The Mattel exec went on to reveal that the aim is to bring a “surrealistic” touch to the talking purple dinosaur signaling Mattel’s commitment art.

“It would be so daring of us, and really underscore that we’re here to make art,” McKeon said.

Kaluuya, who joined the project in 2019, confirmed in an interview with Yahoo UK last month that the script is still in development, emphasizing the “high standards” he has for his projects.

“The script’s gotta be good, you know what I mean? It’s in development,” the Get Out star told the outlet.

Mattel is also bringing Barney back to television in a new animated series slated to debut globally in 2024, as previously reported.

The series is created for preschool children and will feature “music-filled adventures centered on love, community, and encouragement,” the company said in February.

Barney is getting an updated look for the TV show.

El Segundo, California-based Mattel also plans to develop new Barney-themed YouTube content, music, toys, books, and clothes.