A recent study published in BMJ Open concluded that scenes in movies depicting alcohol consumption double the likelihood of underage drinking. The study was conducted over a two-year period on over 6,500 kids from the ages of 10 to 14, with results showing a proportion of the studied group increased underage drinking from 11% to 25%. Another conclusion found from the study was that when children in these age groups see scenes involving alcohol, they are likely to progress to binge drinking. Results showed an increase in binge drinking from 4% to 13% over the course of the study.
Although other factors are involved in underage and binge drinking, James Sargent of the Cotton Cancer Center at Dartmouth Medical School believes that, “product placement in movies is forbidden for cigarettes in the U.S.A., but is legal and commonplace for the alcohol industry, with half of Hollywood films containing at least one alcohol-brand appearance, regardless of film rating.”
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