Movies that depict smoking make less money than smoke-free films, a new study concludes.
Researchers reviewed 1,232 movies released in the United States that were among the top 10 profitable films for at least a week between 2002 and 2010. After taking into account factors such as total budget and film rating, they found films with smoking made 13 percent less in ticket sales than movies without smoking. The study appears online in the journal Tobacco Control.
Lead researcher Stanton Glantz, Director of the Center for Tobacco Control Research and Education at the University of California, San Francisco, leads the Smoke Free Movies project, Scientific American reports. The project advocates for an automatic R rating for any movie that shows smoking.
In July, Glantz conducted a study for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that found children and young teens are being exposed to less smoking in movies than they were five years ago. The study found that since 2005, there has been an almost 72 percent decrease in smoking images in movies rated G, PG or PG-13, from 2,093 in 2005 to 595 in 2010. The average number of smoking incidents in those films decreased from about 20 percent in 2005 to 6.8 percent in 2010.
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