Hispanics Still Underrepresented in Hollywood Movies

Movie Theater Audience

USC's Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism released a study this week showing that characters in films still don't quite mirror their audiences.

According to Fox News Latino, researchers evaluated 500 top-grossing movies which were released in the U.S. between 2007 and 2012, along with 20,000 speaking characters to find patterns in the way different races, ethnicities and genders are depicted.

Researchers of the USC study found that when Hispanic women are cast, they are the ones most likely to be shown nude or flaunting sexy attire. The study also showed that although Hispanics account for approximately 26 percent of movie ticket sales, they are still very much underrepresented, having only 4.2 percent of speaking roles in films.

"At the core, this is a visibility issue," said Katherine Pieper, research scientist at Annenberg's Media, Diversity & Social Change Initiative.

"Who we see in film sends a powerful message about who is important and whose stories are valuable, both to international audiences and to younger viewers in our own country.... Are films communicating to audiences that only certain stories are worth telling?"