Smokefree Movies Blog

Jul 8, 2015 SGlantz

On June 29, 2015, The Walt Disney Company released its updated policy on smoking in youth-rated movies, promised by CEO Robert Iger at the company’s annual meeting. 

At that March 12 meeting, a shareholder asked Mr. Iger if Disney would “commit to an iron-clad policy that your PG-13 and youth-rated movies never show smoking.” Mr. Iger responded:

May 22, 2015 SGlantz

Mad Men’s Betty Hofstadt may be one of only four screen characters in more than a decade to suffer serious harm from smoking. The others were on the big screen: Constantine (Keanu Reeves) in Constantine, Tim Donohue (Donald Sumpter) in The Constant Gardener, and Otis Blake (Jeff Bridges) in Crazy Heart.   

Four thousand different characters have smoked in 1,100 top-grossing movies since 2002. If only three of these film characters were diagnosed...

May 21, 2015 SGlantz

The CDC just released its annual update of its fact sheet on studio performance on smoking in movies; you can read it at

Here is their overview:

  • Watching movies that include smoking causes young people to start smoking. The more smoking young people see on screen, the more likely they are to start...
May 21, 2015 SGlantz

Opening this week in the US, When Marnie Was There (PG rated for "thematic elements and smoking") is an animated feature financed by Japan advertising giant Dentsu, the agency for Japan Tobacco. 

The film is distributed in the US by Gkids, an independent that releases films from Studio Ghibli, a renowned animation company in Tokyo. Gkids founded and produces New York’s annual International Children’s Film Festival. 2015 festival sponsors include the Academy of Motion Picture...

May 9, 2015 SGlantz

This week a new comedy staring James Marsden and Jack Black opened.  The review of the movie in the San Francisco Chronicle  included a still from the movie clearly showing Marsden smoking a cigarette (top photo) but the ads for the movie and its official website show the same image (albiet with some...

May 5, 2015 SGlantz

Our next Smokefree Movies ad that is running May 6 in The Hollywood Reporter and May 12 in Variety lists some of the most bankable names in Hollywood, along with prominent producers and directors, who are responsible for the most smoking in movies.

You can see the ad on the new Smokefree Movies web site here.

Go to ...

Apr 25, 2015 SGlantz

On April 22, 2015, Vivek H. Murthy took the oath of office to serve as US Surgeon General for the next four years.  His wide-ranging speech dealt with several aspects of tobacco control, including announcing that, “I want 100% tobacco-free campuses at every college and university in America. We’re already one-quarter of the way there. We in the federal government should lead by example, making our federal campuses – and over one million units of public housing – tobacco-free, too.”


Apr 23, 2015 SGlantz

Jonathan R. Polansky, Kori Titus, Renata Atayeva, and I just released our analysis of smoking in 2014 films. The full report is available at


From 2002 to 2014, the share of youth-rated (G/PG/PG-13) films with tobacco imagery fell by nearly half, from 68% to 36%. However, almost half of PG-13 films still featured tobacco imagery in 2014. There has been no...

Apr 13, 2015 SGlantz

In mid-June, Time Warner (who owns Warner Bros) will become the first major movie studio to hold a shareholder vote on a Smoke Free
Movies proposal. As soon as Time Warner’s proxy ballot is released in late April, every share of stock in the company becomes one vote. At Time Warner’s annual meeting of shareholders in mid-June, there will be a presentation about the proposal, and the company will announce preliminary vote totals. This historic vote comes...

Mar 23, 2015 SGlantz

After the exchange between Professor Stanton Glantz and Disney CEO Bob Iger in which Mr. Iger said that the studios did not control MPAA ratings policy, the four health groups that last met with the MPAA wrote Iger confirming to him that the MPAA had said that the studios are the policymakers. The MPAA just implements the policy.

Disney, along with the 5 other major studios, make up the MPAA Board of Directors.

Here is their letter:

March 18, 2015

Robert Iger...