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Body Images of Successful Actors: The Good, the Bad, the Handsome and the Ugly

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Abstract:

Zillmann’s (1996) affective-disposition-theory argues that enjoyment derived from witnessing the success and victory of a positive evaluated protagonist and the failure and defeat of a negative evaluated antagonist. Research (e.g. Dion, Berscheid, & Walster (1972), Feingold (1992), Jackson, Hunter, & Hodge (1995), Langlois et. al (2000), Zebrowitz, Hall, Murphy, & Rhodes (2002)) shows that attractive others are evaluated more positive. This should lead to more enjoyment during watching a movie with an attractive protagonist and after all may increase the success of that movie. Therefore we assume that the appearance of male actors influences the part they take in a movie: More attractive men are casted as protagonist and less attractive men are casted as antagonist. While many researchers take the “Beautiful is Good” perception as a bias or stereotype, we contend that individuals have this perception for evolutionary reasons, which were useful to choose the perfect partner for rather short- or long-term relationships.
In a first study female participants (N= 56) rated beside the look and character of the shown actors their qualitiy for being a long- or short-term partner. Almost all of our hypothesis could be retained. For example the protagonists were rated to be more attractive, likable and intelligent than the antagonists and were assessed significantly better for a long-term relationship. In a second study (N = 128) we replicated the results in a larger sample. In addition, a third study aims to extend the approach to the field of German art-house film.
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Association:
Name: International Communication Association
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http://www.icahdq.org


Citation:
URL: http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p403605_index.html
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MLA Citation:

Schwab, Frank., Wedegärtner, Sonja., Carolus, Astrid. and Unz, Dagmar. "Body Images of Successful Actors: The Good, the Bad, the Handsome and the Ugly" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the International Communication Association, Suntec Singapore International Convention & Exhibition Centre, Suntec City, Singapore, <Not Available>. 2014-11-27 <http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p403605_index.html>

APA Citation:

Schwab, F. , Wedegärtner, S. , Carolus, A. and Unz, D. "Body Images of Successful Actors: The Good, the Bad, the Handsome and the Ugly" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the International Communication Association, Suntec Singapore International Convention & Exhibition Centre, Suntec City, Singapore <Not Available>. 2014-11-27 from http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p403605_index.html

Publication Type: Session Paper
Abstract: Zillmann’s (1996) affective-disposition-theory argues that enjoyment derived from witnessing the success and victory of a positive evaluated protagonist and the failure and defeat of a negative evaluated antagonist. Research (e.g. Dion, Berscheid, & Walster (1972), Feingold (1992), Jackson, Hunter, & Hodge (1995), Langlois et. al (2000), Zebrowitz, Hall, Murphy, & Rhodes (2002)) shows that attractive others are evaluated more positive. This should lead to more enjoyment during watching a movie with an attractive protagonist and after all may increase the success of that movie. Therefore we assume that the appearance of male actors influences the part they take in a movie: More attractive men are casted as protagonist and less attractive men are casted as antagonist. While many researchers take the “Beautiful is Good” perception as a bias or stereotype, we contend that individuals have this perception for evolutionary reasons, which were useful to choose the perfect partner for rather short- or long-term relationships.
In a first study female participants (N= 56) rated beside the look and character of the shown actors their qualitiy for being a long- or short-term partner. Almost all of our hypothesis could be retained. For example the protagonists were rated to be more attractive, likable and intelligent than the antagonists and were assessed significantly better for a long-term relationship. In a second study (N = 128) we replicated the results in a larger sample. In addition, a third study aims to extend the approach to the field of German art-house film.


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