Watch Ryan Gosling Perform ‘I’m Just Ken’ at the Oscars

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We all knew that we’d love Ryan Gosling’s live Oscars performance of his hit ballad “I’m Just Ken” from the Barbie movie. But we totally underestimated how much. The “I’m Just Ken” performance was easily our favorite part of the evening. From Ryan Gosling’s homage to Marilyn Monroe to his hot pink bedazzled outfit to singing with his fellow Kens on stage, there was no end to the delight the performance brought us. You can watch Ryan Gosling’s “I’m Just Ken” Oscars performance below and experience the Kenergy for yourself.

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Youtube Video
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“I’m just Ken, and I’m enough. And I’m great at doing stuff.” Well, Ryan Gosling certainly is Kenough, and he’s certainly great at doing stuff, like bringing down the house. This “I’m Just Ken” Oscars performance told a slightly different story than the cinematic version from the Barbie movie. As mentioned, it actually homages Marilyn Monroe’s performance of “Diamonds Are a Girl’s Best Friend” in Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, with Ken, of course, the blonde in question. And, it turns out, it was actually Gosling’s idea to turn this performance into a wink to Monroe. We love this reference on multiple levels. Reach for the stars, Ken! May you and your gentleman have a great time.

Youtube Video
Youtube Video
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We also love that Gosling wasn’t a lone Ken during the “I’m Just Ken” performance at the Oscars. Fellow cinematic Kens from Barbie: Ncuti Gatwa, Simu Liu, Scott Evans, and Kingsley Ben-Adir appeared on stage as well. These appearances were extra exciting for us at Nerdist (and for nerds everywhere) because Gatwa is, of course, the new star of Doctor Who, and Liu and Ben-Adir both gave performances we loved in the MCU. Nerdy Kens for the win! Guns N’ Roses’ Slash also joined Ryan Gosling and the rest on stage. And he brought yet another Kenergy to the table.

Variety reveals that involved in the performance were “a 40-piece orchestra, 62 dancing Kens, over 24 gigantic Barbie heads, and four “cameo Kens.” And that despite playing coy, Gosling had worked on the performance for months with a clear overall structure in his head. Choreographer Mandy Moore and Greta Gerwig also played a big role in the final vision of the piece. Gosling and co. planned everything down to a T, from the inclusion of Gerwig, and Barbie co-stars Margot Robbie and America Ferrara to the line Gosling shared with Emma Stone. Gosling even asked permission before kissing the cameraman’s hand. Moore notes, “[Gosling] was very sweet he goes, ‘Can we just make sure that Sean the steady is OK if I kiss his hand?”

Ryan Gosling, Simu Liu, Ncuti Gatwa, Kingsley Ben-Adir perform Barbie I'm just Ken at Oscars
Oscars

Gosling’s “I’m Just Ken” performance at the Oscars feels like the perfect culmination of Ken’s Barbie journey. Even though the Barbie-focused song “What Was I Made For” ultimately took home the Oscars prize, Ken had his day in the sun too.

Ryan Gosling performs I'm just Ken at the Oscars
Oscars

Hopefully, we’ll see a Barbie: The Album concert tour next. Can you imagine the pink in the crowd? Till then, we’ll replay this “I’m Just Ken” Oscars performance over and over.

Originally published on March 11, 2024.