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Women Spoke Just 27 Percent of the Dialogue in 2016’s Top-Grossing Movies

"Rogue One" came in last place for number of female characters.

“Rogue One: A Star Wars Story”

The Walt Disney Company

It appears that Hollywood is more concerned with the appearance of gender equality than actual equality, a new study shows.

Disappointed by the dashed promise of “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story,” Amber Thomas set about mapping all the dialogue spoken by women in the highest grossing films of 2016. The results were discouraging, to say the least. Though Jyn Erso (Felicity Jones) is the main character in “Rogue One,” virtually every other character in the film is a man. She is often the only woman in a scene, just as Princess Leia was in the original films.

READ MORE: Cléo Journal Addresses ‘Woeful Lack of Feminist Perspectives’ in Film Criticism

Thomas found that only 27 percent of the lines in each of the ten films were spoken by women, or voiced by female actors in the case of animated films. Counting the number of characters, not one of the highest-grossing films had 50 percent female cast. “Finding Dory” came the closest, with 43 percent. “Rogue One” actually came in last in that respect, with 9 percent.

READ MORE: 2016 Bechdel Test Breakdown: More Than Half of Top Films Pass New Study

“Finding Dory” is the only one of the ten films to have over 50 percent female dialogue, with 73 percent of that coming from Dory. Despite landing Scarlett Johansson and Lupita Nyong’o, “The Jungle Book” fared worst, with only 10 percent of its dialogue spoken by a female character. Though Margot Robbie’s Harley Quinn was a major part of the promotional campaign for “Suicide Squad,” she spoke almost half as much as Will Smith’s character.

The full report, with pretty data visualizations, can be found on medium.

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