Tobacco Center Faculty Blog

March 10, 2011

Stanton A. Glantz, PhD

The youth-rated (PG) film Rango is the smokiest in years, a fact that is attracting a lot of attention.

Here is a chronology of recent events:

• January 19, 2011 | the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) announced it had rated a forthcoming Paramount animated feature film, Rango, "PG for rude humor, language, action and smoking." 

• Wednesday, February 23 | Having confirmed some of the tobacco imagery in the movie with more than one source, Smoke Free Movies ran this ad in Variety and The Hollywood Reporter.

• Friday, March 4 | Rango opened on 3,900 screens and grossed $38,079,323 through the weekend.

Rango has the most tobacco incidents of any animated film since 101 Dalmatians (1996). Rango delivered nearly 300 million tobacco impressions to theater audiences across the US and Canada in its first three days.

March 2, 2011

Stanton A. Glantz, PhD

Today's MPAA ratings bulletin announces that Weinstein's The King's Speech has been re-rated from "R" to "PG-13 for language." The bulletin notes: "Edited version. Content is different from 'R' rated version...9/15/10."

Re-rating may get Weinstein a sales boost on the DVD release, but an MPAA waiver also allows the re-rated film to be released to theaters to reap post-Oscars® publicity. News:

"We thank the MPAA for their speedy and sensitive consideration of the alternative version of The King's Speech," said [Weinstein] COO David Glasser. "We are thrilled that they have assigned this version a PG-13 rating and are very grateful for the waiver of the 90-day withdrawal period. At this time, [Weinstein] and the filmmakers are discussing the appropriate next steps." 

February 23, 2011

Stanton A. Glantz, PhD

Today Smokefree Movies ran a full page ad in Variety and Hollywood Reporter highlighting the fact that the new Paramount animated movie Rango, which will hit the theaters next week, on March 4, featured smoking.  Given that the movie is a cartoon, the producers can's use the excuse that the actor insisted on smoking!  Any smoking -- even in cartoons -- contributes to youth smoking.

See the full ad here.

February 2, 2011

Stanton A. Glantz, PhD

The well regarded film, "The King's Speech" is filled with smoking.  The MPAA rated it "R" for language because of one scene where the "f-word" wasrepeated several times as part of a speech therapy session, somethingthat I think was silly.  Despite all the smoking, we would not haverated the film "R" for two reasons: (1) King George actually smoked (anddied of lung cancer) and smoking's negative consequences are clearlypresented (effects on the voicebox).

To see the full ad, click here.

January 12, 2011

Stanton A. Glantz, PhD

 At a time that states are facing unprecedented deficits and making large cuts to education and other programming, they continue to spend billions of dollars subsidizing movies that promote smoking.  We ran an advertisement in the January issue of State Legislatures magazine making this point.