American Heart Association CEO Nancy Brown issued the following comments on a new study released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on “Tobacco Use in Top-Grossing Movies — United States, 2010–2016:”
“Based on previous trends, we thought tobacco use in film would soon play its final scene. This latest CDC study indicates a troublesome plot twist. The fact that there’s been a 43% increase of tobacco depictions in PG-13 movies is alarming. Just one scene with his or her favorite actor lighting up could be all it takes to prompt a young person to start smoking. According to the Surgeon General, kids exposed to tobacco imagery in movies are two to three times more likely to take up this deadly habit than their peers.
- Youth Tobacco Product Use, Including E-Cigarettes, Drops During 2015-2016
- E-Cigarette Use Ups Odds Teens Will Smoke Tobacco Cigarettes
- CDC: 2015 to 2016 Saw Drop in Youth Tobacco Use
- Global Tobacco Control Treaty Has Reduced Smoking Rates
As this study points out, there are fewer movies made these days, but you can watch them anywhere — on demand, on your tablet and on your smart phone. Easier access, coupled with a growing number of tobacco images in film, means more and more young people will be put at risk of a lifetime addiction, disease and possibly an early death.
Film scenes that glamorize smoking in any way should be struck from all movie scripts. But if they do make it to the final cut, the films should have an ‘R’ rating so that they are not marketed to our children.”