Disney is popular with children and adults alike, but the very basis of their entire corporation is bringing imagination, inspiration and entertainment to children’s lives. Because of this, Disney have now taken the decision to ban on screen smoking in every single one of their films, including Marvel, Pixar and Lucasfilm. The only exception is when historical figures appear smoking because they may have smoked at that time in history, nonetheless even then the act of smoking in that instance is never glamorised.
In previous Disney productions like Peter Pan, Pinocchio and Dumbo smoking was commonly shown and even glamorised, because the cartoons came out at a time smoking was still accepted and even promoted. Times have moved on massively since then and there is a global anti-smoking campaign, which means popular corporations like Disney hold a great responsibility when it comes to influencing young minds.
It’s really no surprise Disney have made this historic move, considering that articles detailing smokers getting younger and younger are becoming so common. An article by News 24 discusses a poll by Opinion Matters which showed 8 children as young as 10 (in a survey of 1000) smoked due to exam pressure.
The article was discussing how exam pressure has led to young people smoking, eating junk food and drinking energy drinks in a bid to deal with their nerves. Although the focus of the article wasn’t on the child smokers, simply reading that children as young as 10 are turning to cigarettes is an eye opening statistic, whatever the cause.
Did you know;
- Two thirds of smokers start smoking before they reach the age of 18 (Ash.org)
- Of those who try smoking between a third and a half will become regular smokers (Ash.org)
- Around half of all regular smokers will eventually be killed by their habit (Ash.org)
With these shocking statistics in mind, it’s no wonder influential corporations like Disney have taken steps to ensure they don’t in any way promote such a harmful habit. It wouldn’t be too hopeful to think that all media (magazines, films, tv programmes) will be cigarette free at some point in the near future.