Smoking and Hollywood: A Complicated History

The folks at Sterling Cooper (Draper Pryce) smoke a lot. There's an undeniable coolness when Jon Hamm lights a cigarette on Mad Men, a glamorization of the habit that has been largely absent from most recent films and TV shows. In honor of the show's return on Sunday, Paste has a history of Hollywood's long, complicated relationship with smoking:

Cigarette makers have long had a history of getting placement for their product in Hollywood, but thanks to the 1998 Tobacco Master Settlement Agreement, that's no longer the case. Regardless, smoking is still often depicted, blatantly or not, in film and TV. Years ago, the Harvard School of Public Health began focusing their efforts on getting cigarette smoking off the silver screen, with some noticeable results. For example, Emma Thompson's character in the 2006 film Stranger Than Fiction smokes cigarettes, but producer Lindsay Doran made it a point for her character to hack and cough as a result of her smoking, depicting it as unappealing. Producers likewise had a hand in the lack of smoking in another film out the same year, The Devil Wears Prada.

Read the full story at Paste.

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Kevin Fallon is a reporter for the Daily Beast. He's a former entertainment editor at TheWeek.com and former writer and producer for The Atlantic's entertainment channel.

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