USA Today has a story about smoking in movies:
A new study by the American Medical Association Alliance, the volunteer branch of the AMA, finds that over the past six years more than half of the movies geared toward children feature characters smoking. In more than a quarter of the movies, actors light up cigars.
The study’s own figures show that while the majority of PG and PG-13 films show characters smoking, it has decreased since 2007, when a stricter rating policy from the MPAA went into effect.
MPAA spokesman Seth Oster takes issue with the study. He says his organization’s own four-year analysis of 3,400 films found that of the 1,938 movies that featured smoking, 75% were rated R. In addition, he notes, the MPAA has added phrases such as “glamorizes smoking” and “pervasive smoking” in its ratings. “We have incorporated smoking as a factor on par with other issues like language, violence and sexual situations,” Oster says. “The motion picture industry takes very seriously the issue of smoking in films.”
The AMAA and American Lung Association would like an R rating for any film with smoking unless it is a biographical film or a movie addressing the dangers of tobacco.