News

Hollywood big-screen diversity out of step with U.S.

Hollywood big-screen diversity out of step with U.S.

HOLLYWOOD:But in its evaluation of 3,932 speaking characters in 100 films from last year, researchers determined that 5 percent of characters on screen were Hispanics compared with 17.1 percent of the U.S. population in 2013, according to government figures. Photo: Reuters

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – Hollywood has not meaningfully increased the number of minority characters on the big screen and Hispanics were the most underrepresented in films, a study released on Monday said.

About three-quarters of film characters were white last year, which was in line with annual totals over the previous five years, according to the study, conducted by the University of Southern California’s Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism.

But in its evaluation of 3,932 speaking characters in 100 films from last year, researchers determined that 5 percent of characters on screen were Hispanics compared with 17.1 percent of the U.S. population in 2013, according to government figures.

“Hispanics and Latinos are one of the fastest-growing groups in the U.S.,” Marc Choueiti, an author of the study, said in a statement. “If popular films were the only way to gauge diversity, viewers would be completely unaware of this. Individuals from this group are almost invisible on screen.”

Furthermore, the study found that Hispanic men and women were the most sexualized group in Hollywood, with 37.5 percent of female characters shown partially or fully naked, and 16.5 percent of males portrayed in revealing or tight clothing.

Black actors fared better, the study found, with 14.1 percent of the speaking parts. Blacks make up 13.2 percent of the U.S. population.

But only five of the 107 directors credited in the movies examined were black, the study found. Black directors, who were all male, were also more likely to direct black actors.

Minority-directed films, however, scored big at this year’s Oscar awards with “12 Years a Slave,” a film by Steve McQueen, who became the first black director to win the best picture honor. Mexican director Alfonso Cuaron took home the best director award for his outer space drama “Gravity.”

The study faulted Hollywood for not changing the representation of minorities in line with demographic changes in the United States, where nearly half of children younger than five are not white.

“Despite the demographic changes at work in the U.S., films still portray a homogenized picture of the world,” the study said, adding that the findings “illustrate how existing cultural stereotypes may still govern how characters from different backgrounds are shown on screen.”

(Reporting by Eric Kelsey; Editing by Piya Sinha-Roy and Steve Orlofsky)

Recent Headlines

in Entertainment

Today in entertainment history: Nov. 21

dallas

A look back on the Hollywood headlines that went down in history.

in Sports

TNF on KPUG: Raiders snap 16-game skid with vs. KC

Oakland Raiders quarterback Derek Carr (4) passes against the Detroit Lions during the second half of an NFL preseason football game in Oakland, Calif., Friday, Aug. 15, 2014.

The Oakland Raiders snapped a 16-game losing streak with a 24-20 victory over the Kansas City Chiefs on Thursday night.

in Sports

Former UNLV coach Tarkanian hospitalized in Vegas

Chris Connor / WENN

Naismith Hall of Fame basketball coach Jerry Tarkanian is hospitalized in Las Vegas, where his son says he's being treated for pneumonia.

in Sports

Howard voted US player of year for 2nd time

2014 FIFA World Cup - Group G, USA (0) v (1) Germany

Goalkeeper Tim Howard has been voted the U.S. Soccer Federation's Male Athlete of the Year for the second time.

in Sports

No. 12 Kansas State beats West Virginia

Kansas State Wildcats head coach Bill Snyder talks to the officials during an NCAA college football game against Auburn Thursday, Sept. 18, 2014 in Manhattan, Kan.

Jake Waters threw for a career-high 400 yards and a touchdown, Tyler Lockett returned a punt for a score and No. 12 Kansas State beat sloppy West Virginia 26-20 on Thursday night.

Bellingham Traffic