You Won't Ever Watch Disney Movies The Same Way After Reading This

Photo: Moviestore/REX/Shutterstock.
In light of the ongoing discourse about Hollywood being dominated by white male actors, an ambitious team of data journalists decided to quantify the problem. In a massive undertaking, they analyzed the screenplays of over 2,000 films to find out exactly how bad the gender imbalance in film really is. The study is from Polygraph, a startup publication that, according to its website, "explores popular culture with data and visual storytelling."
The results are depressing, to say the least. But the findings that hit us the hardest are the ones concerning Disney movies. The researchers figured out exactly how many lines were spoken by male and female characters (human and non-human) in 30 different Disney films. They found that men spoke more often than women in 22 of those movies, or 73%. That's right — nearly three-quarters of the Disney canon we grew up on is dominated by male characters.
Now, this isn't the first time somebody's unveiled disturbing realities about gender equality problems in children's movies. But learning that about 98% of the dialogue in Toy Story and The Jungle Book is spoken by males is stunning. We might've thought that more recent Disney films avoided this pitfall, but that isn't the case at all.

In Up, 97% of the lines were spoken by males and about 88% so in Ratatouille. Nor would we have guessed that movies titled after the central female character would be so imbalanced: 66% of the lines in Pocahontas and 73% of the lines in Mulan are spoken by men. In The Little Mermaid, males do 72% of the talking. Take a look at the rest of the data, visualized below.
Photo: Courtesy of Polygraph.
Here is your tiniest of consolation prizes: There is at least a meager handful of films where females do most of the talking by a margin greater than 10%: Inside Out, Alice In Wonderland, Sleeping Beauty, and Maleficent.

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