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Study finds Oscar-nominated films are ageist

It’s true: Youth is gold in Hollywood. 

A study conducted by Humana Inc. and the University of Southern California found that characters 60 or older are underrepresented and misrepresented in Oscar-nominated movies. 

The study looked at 1,256 speaking or named characters in the 25 films nominated for the Academy Award for Best Picture in 2014, 2015 and 2016 and found that only 11.8 percent of the characters were 60 or older, though seniors make up 18.5 percent of the general U.S. population. 

Even when the movies did feature leading or supporting characters over 60, they were portrayed in a negative light because of their age. Lines referring to aging characters included “mentally feeble, sick old ladies” and “…just sit here and let Alzheimer’s run its course,” the study found. 

How does this representation compare to reality? Humana says that seniors found the depictions inaccurate -- on average, they rated the level of accuracy of 5 or less on a 10-point scale. 

Moreover, aging Americans rated themselves as “satisfied with mind and body” as 7.54 on a 10-point scale and their optimism as 7.24. 

Take that, Hollywood.