BODY HEIGHT AND OCCUPATIONAL SUCCESS FOR ACTORS AND ACTRESSES1


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Abstract

Summary.The association of body height with occupational success has been frequently studied, with previous research mainly finding a positive effect among men and positive or null effects among women. Occupational success has almost exclusively been measured so far by short-term success variables (e.g., annual income). In the present study, the relationship of success and height was examined in a group of actors and actresses using a large online database about movies (Internet Movie Database) where heights of actors and actresses are stated. The number of roles played in movies and television series during each actor's lifetime was used as a measure of long-term occupational success. No height effect was found for male actors but a significant negative effect was found for actresses, even after controlling for possible confounding influences (age and birth year). Compared to the general population, actors and actresses were significantly taller; however, actresses who were shorter than average were more likely to achieve greater occupational success, in terms of being featured in more movies.

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