Margot Robbie has played nine pop culture legends over her career. Here's how she compares to the real-life icons.

·10 min read
margot robbie and clara bow
Margot Robbie will play Clara Bow in "Babylon."Mike Marsland/WireImage/Getty Images; Donaldson Collection/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images
  • Margot Robbie has never shied away from taking on an iconic figure or real person in her career.

  • Her big breakthrough was playing the second wife of Jordan Belfort in "The Wolf of Wall Street."

  • This year, Robbie will play silent film actress Clara Bow in "Babylon."

Margot Robbie's breakthrough role was playing Jordan Belfort's second wife Naomi in the 2013 biopic "The Wolf of Wall Street."

margot robbie in the wolf of wall street
"The Wolf of Wall Street."Paramount Pictures

"The Wolf of Wall Street" was based on the 2007 memoir of the same name, written by Belfort about his exploits working as a stockbroker in New York City in the '90s.

Belfort, played by Leonardo DiCaprio, meets Robbie's character at a party and quickly leaves his first wife for Naomi.

In real life, Belfort's ex-wife is named Nadine Macaluso (née Caridi). Here she is in 2014.

Tubefilter and Streamy Awards founder Drew Baldwin, Wizard World CEO John Macaluso and Nadine Macaluso
Nadine Macaluso in 2014.Jesse Grant/SAs 2014/Getty Images for DCP

Macaluso and Belfort divorced in 1998.

Robbie met with Macaluso while she was working on "Wolf of Wall Street."

"I had the choice to meet her or not and I opted to meet her, and I'm really glad I did. It ended up being really helpful," Robbie told IndieWire in 2014. "She was really great about it, really understanding, which is a real attribute to how strong she is as a person. She's has to be, to have put up with Jordan and his shenanigans," Robbie continued, "She doesn't really have a filter in what she says."

In 2016, she played Jane Porter, the romantic interest of Tarzan, in "The Legend of Tarzan."

margot robbie in tarzan
"The Legend of Tarzan."Warner Bros. Pictures

While "The Legend of Tarzan" wasn't a hit with critics, it made a respectable $356 million at the box office.

This 2016 film was another take on the iconic story of Tarzan, an orphan who is raised by apes after his parents died. In "Legend of Tarzan," Jane and "John," aka Tarzan, have been living amongst the humans for some time.

Jane has been a character for as long as Tarzan. She made her debut in the 1912 story by Edgar Rice Burroughs, "Tarzan of the Apes." This is what she looks like in the 1999 Disney film.

jane of tarzan and jane
"Tarzan."Buena Vista Pictures

Tarzan and his love interest Jane have been in pop culture for over 100 years, and has been played by over 20 women on film over the course of time, including Enid Markey, Maureen O'Sullivan, Bo Derek, Andie MacDowell, Minnie Driver, Olivia d'Abo, and, of course, Robbie.

Robbie made her first appearance as Harley Quinn in 2016's "Suicide Squad." She's reprised the role twice more since.

margot robbie as harley quin
"Suicide Squad."Warner Bros. Pictures

For many, Robbie's portrayal as the psychiatrist-turned-henchwoman Harley Quinn is the only thing that worked about 2016's "Suicide Squad," even if there was lots of controversy about how scantily clad she was.

Robbie received her own spin-off in 2020, "Birds of Prey," and reprised the role in 2021's "The Suicide Squad."

Harley Quinn made her debut in an episode of "Batman: The Animated Series" in 1992 as the Joker's girlfriend and co-conspirator.

harley quinn in batman the animated series
"Batman: The Animated Series."Warner Bros. Television Distribution

Yes, even though Harley is most associated with comic-book characters like Batman and Joker, she actually made her debut in the '90s Batman cartoon, "Batman: The Animated Series." Harley appeared in the comics soon after, and has remained a Bat-verse mainstay ever since.

Right now, there are at least three versions of Harley floating around on-screen: Robbie in the DC Extended Universe, Kaley Cuoco voices her in the HBO Max animated series "Harley Quinn," and Lady Gaga will be playing Harley in the 2024 sequel to "Joker," titled "Joker: Folie à Deux."

Robbie received her first Oscar nomination for playing disgraced Olympic ice skater Tonya Harding in the 2017 film "I, Tonya."

margot robbie in i tonya
"I, Tonya."Neon

"I, Tonya" starred Robbie as the former ice skating pro, Harding, who was banned from ice skating after her then-husband Jeff Gillooly and Shane Stant assaulted fellow skater Nancy Kerrigan.

While Harding maintains her innocence, the United States Figure Skating Association banned her for life in June 1994.

Robbie was nominated for an Oscar for her role, and Allison Janney won best supporting actress for her performance as Harding's mother LaVona.

Here's what Harding looked like at the real 1994 Winter Olympics in Lillehammer, Norway.

tonya harding 1994 olympics in lillehammer
Tonya Harding of the USA at the 1994 Winter Olympics on February 25, 1994.David Madison/Getty Images

Harding and Robbie developed a relationship while Robbie was filming "I, Tonya."

The two sat down with The Hollywood Reporter in January 2018, around when the film premiered. "I did not expect you to be so kind and forthcoming with me because I've had so much disrespect in my life. I don't even wish for my worst enemy to have to go through anything that I went through," Harding told Robbie.

Robbie then told Harding, "I kept thinking to myself, it's a shame that all of your athletic achievements were overshadowed by what happened in 1994."

That same year, Robbie played Daphne de Sélincourt, the wife of "Winnie the Pooh" author A.A. Milne, in "Goodbye Christopher Robin."

goodbye christopher robin
"Goodbye Christopher Robin."Fox Searchlight Pictures

"Goodbye Christopher Robin" followed Milne, his wife, and their son Billy, the inspiration for Christopher Robbin in the "Winnie the Pooh" books," as Milne struggled to write after coming home from World War I.

As Milne began developing the characters of the Hundred Acre Wood, Billy became closer with his nanny while his mother was a bit more distant.

"It was really interesting to learn that part of the reason [Winnie the Pooh] was so popular was that it came at a time when the country and the world were hurt from the war. After World War I, everyone felt robbed of their innocence. It gave a little bit of that back," Robbie told Entertainment Weekly in September 2017.

"You could open these books up, and there was this beautiful, simple, happy life that you could be transported to. People needed that at the time — and probably need it still today," she continued.

Here's the real Mr. and Mrs. Milne.

aa milne and Daphne Milne
Mr. and Mrs. A.A. Milne enjoying a day out.Bettmann/Getty Images

The real Daphne lived from 1890 to 1971, outliving her husband by 15 years. Towards the end of her life, she was estranged from her son, the real Christopher Robin, who felt his childhood had been taken away from him due to the fame brought on by Winnie the Pooh and his friends.

She transformed totally in the 2018 historical drama "Mary Queen of Scots." Robbie played Queen Elizabeth I.

margot robbie as queen elizabeth
"Mary Queen of Scots."Focus Features

Robbie was almost unrecognizable as the Virgin Queen, aka Queen Elizabeth I, in "Mary Queen of Scots," which she co-starred in with Saoirse Ronan.

While there's no historical evidence that the two royal cousins ever met in person, the film shows a meeting of the queens in one of its best scenes.

Queen Elizabeth I was the queen of England from 1558 to 1603. Her parents were King Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn.

Queen Elisabeth I. (1553-1603). Around 1575
Queen Elizabeth I.brandstaetter images/Contributor/Getty Images

Of her multi-hour transformation into the heavily scarred and made-up monarch, "It was very alienating. And I felt very lonely. It was an interesting social experiment," Robbie told Hapers Bazaar in November 2018.

"I feel like Mary and Elizabeth could have just sat down and worked it out over coffee," continued Robbie, "But all those men kept getting in their way."

Robbie played actress Sharon Tate in Quentin Tarantino's revisionist history tale "Once Upon a Time in Hollywood" in 2019.

margot robbie in once upon a time in hollywood
"Once Upon a Time in Hollywood."Sony Pictures Releasing

"Once Upon a Time" is Tarantino's love letter to 1960s Los Angeles, the Los Angeles of his youth (he was born in 1963).

One of the biggest loss-of-innocence moments in the '60s was, of course, the murder of Tate, an actress known for "Valley of the Dolls" and wife of director Roman Polanski, by members of the Manson family in 1969.

But in the film, the eight-months-pregnant Tate is saved by her next-door neighbor Rick Dalton (Leonardo DiCaprio) and his best friend/bodyguard Cliff Booth (Brad Pitt).

"It was kind of, sometimes very sad to be that closely connected with real-life Sharon," Robbie said during a "Today" appearance in July 2019.

"It would kind of hit you at moments. Suddenly the tragedy of it all would kind of hit you and you'd be tremendously sad. And other times she just made me feel so happy. But yes, there were moments where it was very sad," she continued.

The real Sharon Tate was murdered in 1969 by the Manson family.

sharon tate March 1966
Sharon Tate.Reg Burkett/Express/Hulton Archive/Getty Images

Tragically, there was no Cliff Booth or Rick Dalton to save Tate, her unborn child, or her friends Jay Sebring, Abigail Folger, Wojciech Frykowski, and Steven Parent.

Tate's sister Debra told Vanity Fair in July 2019 that she enjoyed the movie.

"She actually touched me in a way that convinced me that she was Sharon. She did such a damn good job that, for me, personally, the visit was a little short. I had Sharon back in front of me again, and it was too short a visit," she said.

The latest American icon that Robbie will play is none other than Barbie in the 2023 film directed by Greta Gerwig.

margot robbie as barbie
Margot Robbie filming scenes for "Barbie."MEGA/GC Images/Getty Images

During the summer of 2022, there was no bigger film set fascination than that of "Barbie," which stars Robbie as the famed doll and Ryan Gosling as Barbie's trusty companion Ken (along with America Ferrera, Simu Liu, Kate McKinnon, Issa Rae, Michael Cera, Will Ferrell, Kingsley Ben-Adir, Emma Mackey, Hari Nef, Dua Lipa, Ncuti Gatwa .. and more).

In fact, "Barbiecore" has taken over fashion, and this Greta Gerwig-led film is part of it.

Robbie is truly a dead ringer for the iconic doll.

barbie 2000
Barbie in 2000.Mattel, Inc./Liaison/Getty Images

The first Barbie was released in March 1959 — and ever since, little kids all over the world have played with never-ending variations of her since.

Barbie has had many different careers, family members, and has been based on at least 29 inspiring real-life women.

And if thought Barbie was slowing down, you're sadly mistaken: Barbie brought in at least $1.12 billion for Mattel in 2021, the Los Angeles Business Journal reported.

In December 2022, Robbie will play silent film star Clara Bow in "Babylon," but there hasn't been any footage released yet. Here's the real Bow in 1927.

Actress Clara Bow poses for a Paramount Pictures publicity still circa 1927 in Los Angeles, California
Clara Bow in 1927.Donaldson Collection/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

Robbie has two films coming up in the back half of 2022: David O. Russell's "Amsterdam," which claims to be based on a true story, and Damien Chazelle's Old Hollywood epic "Babylon."

In "Babylon," Robbie stars as Clara Bow, who was one of the select few movie stars who was able to transition from silent films to "talkies," which is when the movie is set. Robbie will co-star with Brad Pitt and Samara Weaving in undisclosed roles, as well as other actors playing real silent film stars and Hollywood figures.

For example, Tobey Maguire will play Charlie Chaplin, Li Jun Li will play Anna May Wong, Max Minghella will play famed producer Irving Thalberg, and Jean Smart will play novelist and screenwriter Elinor Glyn.

Read the original article on Insider