For Immediate Release May 8, 2012
Contact Paul Murphy (801) 538-1892 firstname.lastname@example.org
SHURTLEFF ASKS MOVIE STUDIOS TO BLOW OUT SMOKING IN YOUTH-RATED MOVIES
Utah Attorney General Mark Shurtleff and 37 state and territorial attorneys general are urging 10 movie studios to eliminate people using tobacco in youth-rated movies. Today they sent a signed letter to the studios as a follow-up to the March 8 U.S. Surgeon General’s Report which states the “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.”.
“We mean it when we say this is a colossal, preventable tragedy,” says Shurtleff. “Everyone loves movies and we hope the movie studios will love their customers enough to take the needed steps to reduce the harm.”
Smoking in the movies became a bigger concern for many attorneys general in 1998 when the National Association of Attorneys General (NAAG) adopted a resolution calling on the industry to reduce tobacco use in feature films. The resolution was made the same year as the groundbreaking tobacco Master Settlement Agreement (MSA) which prohibited paid product placements. However, smoking in movies has remained a negative influence on young people.
Here are the requested steps for the motion picture studios: • Adopt corporate policies to eliminate tobacco use in youth-rated movies. • Include anti-tobacco spots on all future DVDs and Blu-ray videos that depict smoking. • Add closing credits in all future films with smoking that no payoffs were made with the tobacco industry. • Keep all future movies free of displaying tobacco brands, packaging and promotional material.
“A point we made to studios nearly five years ago bears repeating: each time the industry releases another movie that depicts smoking, it does so with the full knowledge of the harm it will bring to children who watch it,” the NAAG letter reads.
A copy of the NAAG letter and the list of executives it was sent to, can be found here: http://www.naag.org/sign-on_archive.php
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