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Movie Studios Urged To Stop Smoking Depiction In Youth-Rated Movies

CONTACT: William H. Sorrell, Attorney General, (802) 828-3171

May 10, 2012

Vermont Attorney General William Sorrell co-authored a letter, issued today by the National Association of Attorneys General (NAAG), and signed by 38 state and territorial Attorneys General, urging 10 movie studios to adopt published policies to eliminate tobacco depictions in youth-rated movies. This effort follows the March 8 U.S. Surgeon General’s Report, which states that “[t]he evidence is sufficient to conclude that there is a causal relationship between depictions of smoking in the movies and the initiation of smoking among young people.”

“It is time for all motion picture studios to take a leadership role in protecting the health and lives of our children by eliminating depictions of smoking in movies rated G, PG, and PG-13,” said Attorney General Sorrell, who has been a leader in this area. Attorneys General have been concerned about smoking in the movies since at least 1998, when NAAG adopted a resolution calling on the industry to reduce tobacco depictions in feature films. The Master Settlement Agreement, signed the same year, also addressed one aspect of smoking in the movies, prohibiting product placements. However, smoking in the movies has remained a negative impact upon young people.

  Website consulting provided by The National Association of Attorneys General.