August 21st, 2013
12:48 PM ET
GLAAD released its first study on the diversity of Hollywood films and the news is not great.
The GLAAD Studio Responsibility Index examined the six largest film studios – 20th Century Fox, Paramount Pictures, Sony Columbia, Universal Pictures, The Walt Disney Studios, and Warner Brothers – in terms of how inclusive they were in containing characters identified as lesbian, gay, or bisexual. In looking at 101 movie releases from the studios in 2012, only 14 had LGBT characters.
“As a major influence in American culture and one of our nation's largest media exports abroad, the lack of LGBT characters in big-budget films needs to change,” said GLAAD's Wilson Cruz in the organizations's press release. “Until LGBT characters are depicted in these films in a substantial way with more regularity, there will remain the appearance of LGBT bias on the studios’ part."
"Whether it's an action hero or a supporting character, moviegoers should be able to see LGBT people as integral players in the stories told by leading Hollywood studios.”
Here are some of the findings from the index:
• Of the 31 different characters counted (some of whom were onscreen for no more than a few seconds), 26 were white (83.9%), 4 were Black/African American (12.9%) and 1 was Latino (3.2%). There were no Asian-Pacific Islander or recognizably multi-racial LGBT characters counted.
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• The most common place to find LGBT characters in the major studios’ 2012 releases was in comedies, where nine of the 24 comedies released (37.5%) were inclusive.
Films like "The Perks of Being a WallFlower" and "Pitch Perfect" had LGB characters. Of all of the films, none had transgendered characters.
GLAAD has developed Vito Russo Test as a way of judging the films. The criteria includes that the character identify as LGBT and that they must be an integral part of the plot. Less than half of the films that contained LGBT characters passed the test.
Universal Pictures had the most LGBT characters represented, the study said.
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