Fun Fact: Smoking In Kids’ Films Fell Dramatically In 2010
Parents and organizations alike are always lobbying to get less smoking advertisements in front of their kids — and films often serve as the biggest loophole. Although current laws prohibit cigarettes to be directly marketed to children, that doesn’t stop many kids from watching their favorites actors or characters from lighting up on screen. But for those films rated G, PG, and PG-13, smoking scenes fell 72% from 2009.
There were 595 incidents of onscreen tobacco use in the top-grossing youth-rated (G, PG, or PG-13) movies in 2010, a drop of 72 percent from the 2,093 incidents in 2005. The number of incidents in G-rated and PG-rated movies dropped 94 percent, from 472 in 2005 to 30 in 2010, the study said.
And 55 percent of all 137 top-grossing movies last year had no tobacco incidents at all, compared with 33 percent of the top-grossing movies in 2005. Among youth-rated movies, 70 percent had no incidents in 2010, compared with 45 percent in 2005.
The study’s researcher Stanton Glantz, director of the Center for Tobacco Control Research and Education at the University of California at San Francisco, noted that children often take up smoking as “a result of the balance of the pro- and anti-tobacco pressures on them.” So while there are considerable anti-smoking campaigns out there, movies and marketing campaigns that feature smoking seem to cancel those anti-smoking sentiments out.
But pressure to keep smoking out of children’s films seems to have generated substantial results, which means that toppling that pro- and anti-tobacco balance may have just gotten easier.