A new study out of the USC’s Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism seemingly backs up the sentiment behind #OscarsSoWhite with an analysis that all but proves that (surprise) Hollywood is still largely white and male no matter how you look at it.
"For the past 10 years, we have quantified disturbing patterns around the lack of media representation concerning females and people of color in film," the study's authors explained. "Despite elevated awareness around this issue, the numbers have not budged."
Researchers Stacy L. Smith, Marc Choueiti, and Katherine Pieper analyzed 109 movies along with 305 network television, cable, and digital-first series that were released between September 1 2014 and August 31 2015. The study analyzed not only the racial and gender breakdown of the shows' characters, but also the makeup of the production team and company executives responsible for bringing the media to market.
"The major unit of analysis was the speaking or named character. Each speaking character was assessed for role, demographics, domesticity, and hypersexualization," the report describes. "Behind the camera, the gender of directors and writers of each film and every episode within a sampled series was evaluated."
Some of the study's key findings were as disappointing as they were wholly unsurprising:
Of the 11,306 speaking characters evaluated, 66.5% were male and 33.5% were female.
Female characters accounted for only about 28% of all speaking roles in film.
You're most likely to see female characters over the age of 40 on streaming shows. The opposite was true of film.
Female characters were universally more sexualized than male characters regardless of media.
Only 3.4% of all film directors were female, whereas 17.1% of broadcast directors were women
For every one female screenwriter there were 2.5 male screenwriters.
Stories with a female director attached had 5.4% more girls/women on screen than those stories without female direction.
Most stories fail to reflect or match the demographic composition of the U.S.
At least half or more of all cinematic, television, or streaming stories fail to portray one speaking or named Asian or Asian American on screen.
Just 2% of speaking characters were LGBT-identified and a mere seven transgender characters appeared in the sample of content—four of whom were in the same series.
"The film industry still functions as a straight, White, boy’s club," the study concludes grimly. "Characters from underrepresented racial/ethnic groups are also excluded or erased from mediated storytelling. The complete absence of individuals from these backgrounds is a symptom of a diversity strategy that relies on tokenistic inclusion rather than integration."