Minority actors like Chiwetel Ejiofor (12 Years a Slave) have few speaking roles in big films.
Just because there have been recent popular film releases such as 12 Years a Slave, 42 and The Butler that feature minority actors, don't for a second believe that minorities have been well-represented in high-grossing films.
According to research done by the University of Southern California Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism, minorities are still under-represented in popular films. There is a small number of minority characters as well as directors.
For example, researchers found that in 2012, 76.3 percent of speaking characters in these movies were white (63 percent of the country is white and 56 percent of movie ticket buyers are white). On the other hand, Latinos make up 26 percent of the movie ticket buyers, but they only have 4.2 percent of speaking roles. In addition, 10.8 percent of the speaking characters were black, 5 percent were Asian and 3.6 percent were from other ethnicities.
When it comes to who's directing the top-grossing films, researchers found that only 5.8 percent were black.
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Article posted on 10/30/2013
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