Barbie in the Nutcracker

Barbie in the Nutcracker is a 2001 American-Canadian direct-to-DVD computer-animated film directed by Owen Hurley.[1] It was the first Barbie film since the 1987 series, Barbie and the Rockers: Out of This World. It is also the first in the CGI second-generation Barbie film series, all of which feature the voice of Kelly Sheridan as the Barbie protagonist. The film is loosely adapted from E. T. A. Hoffmann's The Nutcracker and the Mouse King and music based from Tchaikovsky's ballet The Nutcracker. The film sold more than 3.4 million units on DVD by 2002,[2] and grossed $150 million in total sales.[3]

Barbie in the Nutcracker
DVD cover
Directed byOwen Hurley
Produced byJesyca Durchin
Jennifer Twiner McCaron
Written byLinda Engelsiepen
Hilary Hinkle
Screenplay byRob Hudnut
Based onThe Nutcracker and the Mouse King
by E. T. A. Hoffmann
The Nutcracker by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky
StarringKelly Sheridan
Tim Curry
Kirby Morrow
Chantal Strand
Music byArnie Roth
Edited byAnne Hoerber
Distributed byArtisan Entertainment
Release date
  • October 23, 2001 (2001-10-23)
Running time
78 minutes
United States


The story is told by Barbie to her younger sister, Kelly, who is having trouble rehearsing a ballet solo and fears going onstage.

A girl named Clara lives with Drosselmeyer, her stern grandfather, and Tommy, her younger brother. On Christmas Eve, they receive a surprise visit from their Aunt Elizabeth. Clara receives a Nutcracker from her aunt who claims it contains the heart of a prince. Clara falls asleep by the Christmas tree and awakens to see her Nutcracker suddenly alive and fighting an army of mice led by the wicked Mouse King. The Mouse King shrinks her down to his size, though he is unable to defeat them and temporarily retreats.

The Nutcracker explains that he needs to find the Sugarplum Princess who is the only person who can stop the Mouse King from taking over his home. The wise owl of the grandfather clock reveals that the Sugarplum Princess is also the only one who can make Clara her original size again. The owl gives Clara a locket that will send her back home when she opens it.

Through a portal in a mouse hole, The Nutcracker and Clara land in an ice cave. They escape with the help of a group of snow fairies and enter the Nutcracker's home of Parthenia. The two journey to Gingerbread Village, where they meet two children and the horse, Marzipan. The children tell them that the rightful heir to the throne, Prince Eric, has gone missing. The group narrowly escapes the Mouse King's army when they are saved by Major Mint and Captain Candy, who lead a small group of villagers in hiding. Mint reveals that the Prince's careless attitude led the former king to pronounce the Mouse as temporary ruler until Eric accepted his responsibilities. Clara realizes that the Nutcracker is the missing prince; when the Mouse decided he wanted to be king forever, he turned Eric into a Nutcracker. Eric hopes to redeem himself and make things right again.

Clara and the Nutcracker, joined by Mint and Candy, set off on a journey to reach the Sugarplum Princess. While Mint and Candy prepare a boat, Clara and Nutcracker manage to free a group of flower fairies who had been trapped in a well by the Mouse King. The group is suddenly attacked by a rock giant, sent by the Mouse King to stop them from reaching the Princess. The snow fairies arrive and freeze the sea, followed by Marzipan pulling a sled, allowing the group to cross. The Nutcracker uses his sword to crack the ice, causing the rock giant to sink into the sea.

The group reaches the princess's island, but it is revealed to be a trap and the Nutcracker, Mint, and Candy are caged and carried off by the Mouse King's bat henchman, Pimm, leaving Clara behind. The flower fairies help carry Clara off the island and to the Mouse King's castle where she frees her friends. The Nutcracker battles with the Mouse King who has his own spell reflected back at him, shrinking him to the size of a real mouse and causing him to flee. The Nutcracker is severely injured and Clara kisses him whereupon he is restored to his true form as Eric. Clara, because she was able to break the spell and save her friends, is revealed herself to be the Sugarplum Princess. Eric is crowned king and the couple, who have fallen in love, dance as the citizens celebrate. The shrunken Mouse King returns riding on Pimm's back, snatches Clara's locket and opens it, but is knocked out of the sky with a snowball. Clara disappears and is magically transported home.

Clara wakes up where she fell asleep. The Nutcracker is missing, and she runs to her grandfather, who dismisses the story as her imagination. Just then, Aunt Elizabeth returns with a young man who is revealed to be Eric, whom she introduces to Clara. Eric asks her to dance. A snow-globe shows Prince Eric and the Sugarplum Princess dancing happily in the palace.

As the story ends, Kelly realizes the importance of not giving up, and she and Barbie finally manage to dance the solo perfectly.

New York City Ballet dancersEdit

Voice castEdit


On October 23, 2001, the movie had a limited release in cinemas for a week.

DVD/VHS releaseEdit

The DVD and VHS was released on December 11, 2001. The new DVD version of the film (with lower-toned audio) was released on October 5, 2010.

Critical Reception

The film received mostly negative reviews from critics. The film holds a score of 20% with 5 reviews on critic aggregator site Rotten Tomatoes.

Television showingsEdit

The film was edited down to one hour for its television showings.[4]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "Barbie in the Nutcracker". Universal Pictures Home Entertainment. Retrieved 31 July 2016.
  2. ^ "Indies Gain Ground In DVD Marketplace". Billboard. Nielsen Business Media. 114 (31): 63. August 3, 2002.
  3. ^ "Barbie: Mattel Corporation" (PDF). Macmillan International Higher Education. Macmillan Publishers. Retrieved September 23, 2018.
  4. ^ Barbie in the Nutcracker IMDb

External linksEdit