Race/Ethnicity

The Annenberg Inclusion Initiative examines the proportion of characters from different racial/ethnic groups on screen in entertainment. Routinely, we find an on-screen underrepresentation of characters who are Black/African American, Hispanic/Latino, Asian or Asian American, Native American, Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander, Middle Eastern, or from other racial/ethnic backgrounds. In addition to prevalence of underrepresented characters, other attributes are analyzed, including parental and relational status and hypersexualization.

View our reports on race/ethnicity on screen in entertainment below. For information on race/ethnicity behind-the-scenes in entertainment, visit the Behind the Scenes tab.

API Representation in Film

2021: The Prevalence and Portrayal of Asian and Pacific Islanders across 1,300 Popular Films

  • With Dr. Nancy Wang Yuen, the study includes an assessment of Asian and Pacific Islander (API) leads and speaking characters across 1,300 top-grossing films from 2007 to 2019. The report also includes a qualitative analysis of primary and secondary API characters from 2019’s most popular movies.

Hispanic/Latino Representation in Film

2023: Hispanic and Latino Representation in Film: Erasure On Screen & Behind the Camera Across 1,600 Popular Movies

  • The report examines top-grossing films from 2007 to 2022 to assess the prevalence and portrayal of Hispanics/Latinos on screen and as directors, producers, and casting directors. The study also includes a qualitative analysis of the presentation of Hispanic/Latino characters.

View previous reports:

Race/Ethnicity in Music

2021: Inclusion in the Music Business: Gender & Race/Ethnicity Across Executives, Artists & Talent Teams

  • Our first report to examine the inclusion profile of the executive ranks across six categories of the music industry, artist race/ethnicity, and that of managers, agents, and publicists.

2021: Inclusion in the Recording Studio?

  • Our fourth annual report on gender and race/ethnicity across 900 popular songs from 2012 to 2020 and 9 years of Grammy nominations in select categories.

View previous reports:

Race/Ethnicity On-Screen in Film

2023: Native American Representation Across 1,600 Popular Films

  • The report examines top-grossing films from 2007 to 2022 to assess the prevalence of Native American characters on screen as well as how often Native actors work in top movies.

2022: PDF icon Research Brief: Inequality in 1,600 Popular Films

  • A research brief on gender and race/ethnicity among leading characters in the 100 top films each year from 2007 to 2022

View previous briefs:

2022: PDF icon Inequality in 1,600 Popular Films

  • Annual report on top-grossing film. Includes data on employment patterns of women (directors, writers, producers, composers, and casting directors) and hiring of Black, Asian, and Hispanic/Latino directors (2007-2022). 

View previous reports:

Inclusion in Netflix Series and Films

2023: Inclusion in Netflix Series and Films: 2018–2021

  • The Initiative analyzed Netflix’s U.S. original live-action films (249) and series (297) from 2018 to 2021. The study examined on-screen inclusion across gender, race/ethnicity, LGBTQ+ and disability. Behind the camera, gender and race/ethnicity of key personnel were assessed. (Full Report)

Economic Performance of Films

2020: The Ticket to Inclusion: Gender & Race/Ethnicity of Leads and Financial Performance Across 1,200 Popular Films

  • The report examines the economic performance of 1,200 top films from 2007 to 2018, using more than a dozen production, distribution, and exhibition factors that could influence economic performance domestically and internationally. A supplemental analysis of films with women of color in leading roles. The report was supported by ReFrame.

Reports on Race/Ethnicity On-Screen in Film, TV, Digital (The CARD Report)

2014-15: PDF icon Inclusion or Invisibility? Comprehensive Annenberg Report on Diversity (CARD)  PDF icon (Full_Report)

  • Report examines film, television, and digital content. The study ranks companies based on inclusivity on screen and behind-the camera.

Reports on Specific Areas of Entertainment

2023: PDF icon Exploring Inclusion in Snapchat Content

  • The study was conducted in partnership with the Media Neuroscience Lab (MNL), University of California, Santa Barbara, and sponsored by Snap. The analysis is a multi-year, first-of-its-kind representation audit of English-language partnered content on Snapchat (content from traditional and digital native media partners). The team used a combination of computational methods and human assessors to understand how well gender, race/ethnicity, LGBTQ+, and disability were represented in Snapchat content. 

Race/Ethnicity and Computer Science On-Screen in Television and Film

2017: Cracking the Code: The Prevalence and Nature of Computer Science Depictions in Media

  • An investigation of how often computer science is depicted in popular films and five samples of television, and the prevalence and portrayal of individuals from underrepresented racial/ethnic groups performing computer science. Report prepared for the Google CS in Media Team.

Race/Ethnicity of Film Critics

2018: Critic's Choice 2: Gender and Race/Ethnicity of Film Reviewers Across 300 Top Films from 2015-2017

  • An examination of gender and race/ethnicity of film reviewers across the top 100 films each year from 2015-2017.

View previous reports