The full study will be released next month, examining 1,600 top-grossing films released from 2007 to 2022 and more than 69,000 speaking characters, with qualitative data about how those Latino and Hispanic characters are presented in films, including whether they “stereotype or stigmatize” the community. It’s the third study analyzing Hispanic and Latino representation from the Initiative’s researchers, led by founder Dr. Stacy L. Smith.
According to the report, Hispanic/Latino actors filled just 10 leading or co-lead roles across last year’s 100 top-grossing films, and eight of those 10 roles went to Hispanic/Latina actors. In the 16-year span studied, just 76 actors filled lead or co-lead roles (across 1,600 top-grossing films); 44 were Hispanic/Latina; and five were Hispanic/Latinas aged 45 and older.
Overall, the study showed that there has been no significant change in the prevalence of Latino characters. In 2022, a mere 6% of speaking characters were Hispanic/Latino, which researchers note is not dissimilar to the 3% found in 2007, but vastly underrepresents the largest ethnic group in the […]
Michelle Rojas-Soto is Social Justice Director at the Eagle Rock Neighborhood Council and Managing Director at Encompass, a racial equity nonprofit. Her children attend LAUSD and Glendale USD schools.