That’s one of the surprising statistics revealed in a new report, titled “The Prevalence and Portrayal of Asian and Pacific Islanders across 1,300 Popular Films,” that uncovers the limited film portrayals of the Api community.
The study — conducted by Dr. Nancy Wang Yuen, Dr. Stacy L. Smith and the USC Annenberg Inclusion Initiative, with funding from Amazon Studios and UTA Foundation — assessed Asian and Pacific Islander leads and speaking characters across 1,300 top-grossing films from 2007 to 2019.
Across 51,159 speaking characters in the movies evaluated, 5.9% were Api. That falls short of the 7.1% of the U.S. population that identifies as Api. Moreover, the report reveals that 39% of all movies fail to show even one Api character.