Disney Films To Be Smoke-Free

Mickey minds very much if you smoke.

Disney has pledged, sort of, to cut out smoking from future Disney-braned films, but says that is not a precedent for a crackdown on other content.

In a letter to House Telecommunications & Internet Subcommittee Chairman Ed Markey (D-Mass.), Disney President Bob Iger said that "we expect [emphasis ours] that depictions of cigarette smoking in future Disney-branded films will be non-existent."

Disney said in a release that the company would "discourage depictions of cigarette smoking in its films."

He also said the company would put anti-smoking PSA's on DVD's of films from co-owned Miramax or Touchstone brands that do show smokers.

But Iger also said that smoking was a "unique problem" and that the move was not "a precedent for any other issue."

The move follows a Markey hearing last month on the effect of media images on children at which legislators called on the movie industry to limit the smoking images and boost the PSAs.

Markey, who released Iger's letter to the public, was pleased, but called on other studios to follow suit. “Disney’s decision to take a stand against smoking is groundbreaking and I commend CEO Bob Iger for this important commitment.  Now it’s time for other media companies to similarly kick the habit and follow Disney’s lead.”


John Eggerton

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.