October 5, 2011

Stanton A. Glantz, PhD

EU scholars, advocates recommend that EU end subsides to films with smoking

On 29 September 2011, more than a dozen prominent European tobacco control scholars, citing evidence that movies with smoking harm European young people, made a formal submission to a European Commission's consultation on State aid to audiovisual works (HT2950) that recommended that future media projects with smoking should be ineligible for public subsidy.
Among others, ASH UK and the Brussels-based European Network for Smoking Prevention noted that six of ten nations handing over the world's largest tax credits to top-grossing films with tobacco imagery were EU members: the UK, Germany, Italy, the Czech Republic, France and Hungary. Between 2008 and mid-2011 EU countries granted more than €260 million (US$ 350 million) in subsidies to top-grossing movies with smoking. Almost all of these films were developed by US film studios.
In 2011, both the World Health Organization and the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend that film subsidies should be harmonized with public health imperatives by making future productions with smoking ineligible. The European  scholars' submission to the EC is available here.

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