Mona Malacane, PhD student, and Sean Connolly, PhD Student, Department of Telecommunications, Media School
Women’s Role in Action Movie Trailers: A Content Analysis Examining Sexual and Agentic Portrayals, 1982-2013
A content analysis of 155 theatrical trailers for action movies was conducted to examine the frequency and nature of women’s role in promotional materials and how this role has evolved over the past 30 years. The results show that fewer women were included in early action movie trailers (i.e. before 2000). When women were observed in action movie trailers, they were often physically sexualized and, in later years, more likely to be shown participating in the action elements of the trailer. Female agency and physical sexualization peaked at the turn of the century and has been followed by several blockbuster female-lead action films. Implications for how women in action movie trailers can affect box office sales are discussed.