Study: Gender Inequality Still a Huge Problem in Hollywood

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It may not be news that cinema reflects society-wide sexism (or racism or homophobia or any prejudice), but a new USC study illuminates the depressing extent of Hollywood’s gender trouble. As the LA Times reports, among the top-grossing movies of 2009, only 32.8 percent of speaking characters were female. Furthermore, those ladies were several times more likely than their male counterparts to wear revealing clothing or be described as sexy by other characters, and the study revealed that women under 20 were just as likely to be portrayed in a sexual light as those between 21 and 29. Most shocking of all is the news that only 3.6 percent of the top grossing films’ directors and 13.5 percent of their writers were women. Unsurprisingly, the stats for ladies in front of and behind the camera are related; movies directed or written by women tended to include more female characters. Again, these numbers are from 2009 — hopefully, when we look back on 2011 (the year of Bridesmaids!), there will be some positive trends to report. [via A.V. Club]