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Exposure of Smoking Scenes in the Popular Movies, Released between 2006 and 2015
J Korean Soc Res Nicotine Tob 2020; 11(1): 16-23
Published online June 15, 2020
© 2020 The Korean Society for Research on Nicotine and Tobacco.

Jinyoung Kim1, Hyunjae Yu2, Sungkyu Lee3*

1Southern Gyeonggi Regional Smoking Cessation Centre, Hallym University, Anyang, 2School of Communication, Sogang University, Seoul, 3National Tobacco Control Centre, Korea Health Promotion Institute, Seoul, Korea
Correspondence to: 씠꽦洹
븳援嫄닿컯利앹쭊媛쒕컻썝 援媛湲덉뿰吏썝꽱꽣
Received April 9, 2020; Revised May 10, 2020; Accepted May 22, 2020.
This is an Open-Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License ( which permits unrestricted non-commercial use, dis-tribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Background: This study aimed to identify trends in smoking scene exposures in popular movies released in Korea.
Methods: One hundred commercially successful movies that were released from 2006 to 2015 were selected from the Korea Film Council셲 database. Ten monitoring teams watched the selected movies to collect data through a structured questionnaire developed by the authors.
Results: The total smoking scene exposures in 100 movies released from 2006 to 2015 was 618. On average, there were 2.7 smoking scene exposures in PG-13 rated movies and 7.5 smoking scene exposures in R rated movies. Smoking scene exposures in the movies that youth could watch (PG-13 and R rated movies) have increased by almost 50% from 42 times in 2006 to 64 times in 2015. One-third of the smoking scenes (123 out of 372) was shown without any relevance to the storyline of the movie, while almost 17% of the smoking scenes were when actors faced stress or divorce. Worry and violation were other situations where smoking scenes were shown. Thirty-five percent of smoking scenes (135 out of 379) portrayed actors smoking in non-smoking areas, including schools, restaurants, or public places, while 15.6% and 8.7% of the smoking scenes took place in the home and street, respectively.
Conclusion: Global and domestic efforts to achieve de-normalization of tobacco use in real life can be undermined by smoking scene exposures in movies. Monitoring and protecting youths from exposure to smoking scenes in PG-13 and R rated movies are needed.
Keywords : Tobacco; Tobacco use; Smoking Scene; Movie; Youth
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