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For Immediate Release
May 3, 2007

Media Contact:
Raquel Guillory, 410-576-6357
rguillory@oag.state.md.us

Attorneys General Ask Hollywood to Remove Smoking from Movies

In an effort to reduce the risk of smoking and its impact on children, Attorney General Douglas F. Gansler and Attorneys General from across the country have asked Hollywood’s major movie studios to take the advice of the Harvard School of Public Health: remove smoking depictions from films accessible to children.

“After years of letters and meetings, the Motion Picture Association of America told the Attorneys General last October that it was going to seek the advice of the experts at Harvard,” said Attorney General Gansler. “If the studios are concerned about the health of our children, they will take that advice and remove smoking in movies viewed by children.”

Today’s announcement follows years of talks between the states’ top lawyers and the MPAA to address scientific evidence that viewing smoking in movies can lead to youths trying smoking for the first time. Beginning in August 2003, as many as 41 Attorneys General have sought the cooperation of the movie industry in reducing youth smoking initiation by eliminating tobacco brand appearances in movies, by reducing or eliminating depictions of smoking in movies, and by airing anti-smoking public service announcements.

Attorney General Gansler’s letter was sent to the following MPAA member companies:  The Walt Disney Studios, Fox Filmed Entertainment, Sony Pictures Entertainment, Warner Bros. Entertainment, Universal Studios, and Paramount Pictures. The letter was also sent to independent movie studios Lionsgate and The Weinstein Company.

   

Attorney General of Maryland 1 (888) 743-0023 toll-free / TDD: (410) 576-6372
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