The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently released a report analyzing tobacco use in Hollywood movies. According to it, the use of such a habit in films generally decreased. However, in the 2015 to 2016 period, its usage marked a sharp rise as it was featured in 41 percent of the top-grossing movies in the U.S.
Tobacco Use Reports Fall but Then Increases Exponentially
The report used data collected by Thumbs Up! Thumbs Down! This is a project initiated by the Breathe California of Sacramento-Emigrants Trail, and it advocates the need for cleaner air, healthier lungs, and a tobacco-free community.
This recently released research is the outcome of previous studies which denoted a causal relation between tobacco use in movies and teenage smoking habits. Namely, the U.S. surgeon general published a report pointing out this link back in 2012.
“We’ve known for a while that the more you see smoking on screen, the more likely you are to see youth smoking cigarettes in real life,” stated Michael Tynan. He is part of the new report and of the Office on Smoking and Health of the CDC.
According to study results, tobacco use features in movies rose by some 80 percent in the period 2015 to 2016. They also appeared in around 41 percent of all the top-grossing films of 2016 in the United States.
Around 26 percent of them had either a P, PG, or PG-13 rating. R-rated movies featured even more such scenes. Namely, tobacco use was present in 67 percent of all such films.
In 2015, the use of tobacco was present some 1,743 times. The following year, in 2016, it was depicted around 3,145 times. This sharp increase drew the attention of public health experts and advocates. These expressed their concern regarding the potential consequences of the increased depictions of tobacco usage.
The research team advances some measures which could help improve the tobacco depiction regulations. One of them targets the Motion Picture Association of America or the authority which rates movies. The team proposed posting an R rating for all movies that contain tobacco use or smoking scenes.
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