“Claiming that “Hollywood is an epicenter of cultural inequality,” a scathing new report found that only 31.4% of all speaking roles in the 100 top-grossing films last year were female and that nearly half (49%) had no speaking roles for Asian or Asian-American characters. The report from USC’s Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism also found that 17% of those films had no black characters, 40% had no Hispanic characters and 82% did not depict a LGBT speaking or named character.
Behind the cameras, the report found that females directed only 4.1% of the top-grossing 800 films evaluated between 2007-15 (excluding 2011). “Women of color were almost absent from these ranks,” the report said, noting that only three of those directors were African-American and one was Asian.
“Despite the advocacy surrounding female directors, film is a representational wasteland for women of color in this key role,” said Dr. Stacy L. Smith, co-author of the report (read it here).
Overall, directors from underrepresented racial groups fared poorly, the report concluded. Only 5.5% of the directors of the 800 films studied were black or African-American and just 2.8% were Asian or Asian-American.
“While the voices calling for change have escalated in number and volume, there is little evidence that this has transformed the movies that we see and the people hired to create them,” Smith said. “Our reports demonstrate that the problems are pervasive and systemic.”
The report also found that of the 1,365 directors, writers and producers of the 100 top-grossing films last year, 81% were men. Amd of the 107 directors, 7.5% were female — a gender ratio of 12.4 male directors for every one female…”