MPAA Snuffs Onscreen Smoking

Flicks with cancer sticks will draw tougher rating
By Dustin Lushing,  Newser Staff
Posted May 11, 2007 5:37 AM CDT
'   (Magnum Photos)
camera-icon View 4 more images

(Newser) – Cigarette and cigar smoking will be considered alongside violence, profanity, nudity, and drug use in assigning ratings, the MPAA announced yesterday. Any film that glamorizes the habit or features lighting up outside of "an historic  or other mitigating context "could face a box-office-busting R. 

The pressure mounting on the movie industry to curb lighting up was tightened by a Harvard study this year that found on-screen smoking to have a powerful influence on young audiences. This month, 32 state attorneys publicly lobbied for R ratings for films containing tobacco; the MPAA says the R won't be automatic, but they'll be "taking it into consideration."