There’s something about Audrey Hepburn’s impossibly long cigarette holder that oozes elegance and class.
The use of tobacco on-screen has long been a device used to help craft characters, from the effortlessly cool Danny Zuko in Grease to the womanising executive Don Draper in Mad Men.
But New Zealand researchers are calling for an R rating for TV shows and films containing tobacco imagery, after a study that shows there has been little change in on-screen smoking in the past 10 years.
“While tobacco imagery cannot be banned in any meaningful way, legislation could be introduced requiring programming with tobacco imagery to be R-rated,” the authors concluded.
The research, led by Louise Marsh of the University of Otago, examined tobacco imagery on New Zealand television over a week-long period in October 2014 – 10 years after a similar study in 2004.
Well The Hobbit and LOTR feature some smoking, so these researchers would ban kids from being able to see those films.
But longstanding film reviewer Graeme Tuckett said an R-rating would achieve nothing. “The whole idea of ratings has almost become redundant, because so many people watch things online.”
Chandler would sometimes smoke on Friends. So that would be banned for kids also.