Tagging Overview

For each media object, up to 8 cast members (a combination of lead and secondary cast) may be tagged. There is no minimum or maximum number of lead or secondary cast members, as long as the combined total does not exceed 8. Depending on the media object, it may not be necessary to include any lead cast members (e.g. anthology series where there are no major recurring characters), or, conversely, any secondary cast members (e.g. a “two-hander” film with only two major characters and no meaningful secondary characters).

There are two types of cast member tags: supertags and secondary tags. Each cast member must have at least one supertag per category (i.e. nationality, ethnicity, etc.) though it is common to have several. Secondary tags should be added when the information is available, but are not required.

Cast member tags use the format “[1] playing [2],” in which [1] refers to the actor and [2] refers to the character. For example, “white playing latinx” denotes that a white actor is playing a Latinx character. If [1] and [2] are the same tag value, then the tag may be simplified. For example, instead of “white playing white,” simply tagging “white” is acceptable.

[1] and [2] must be the same type of tag, i.e. supertag or secondary tag. For example, “white playing asian pacific” and “chinese-british playing chinese-american” are acceptable tags, but “white playing vietnamese-american” is not. This is because “white” is a supertag while “vietnamese-american” is a secondary tag.

Either/both [1] and [2] can include multiple tags, separated by commas. For example, “black, white, multi playing black” or “20-29 playing 20-29, 30-39, 40-49” are both acceptable tags. The first denotes that a mixed race actor is playing a black character. The second denotes that an actor, who remains the same decile throughout filming, plays a character who ages from their 20s to their 40s.

Secondary tags, when they are elaborations on supertags, can stand alone. For example, “white playing asian pacific”, “vietnamese-american” is an acceptable set of tags because “vietnamese-american” is an elaboration on “asian pacific.” In this case, it is not necessary to have a [1] component in the secondary tag.

There are, however, cases in which a secondary tag will require both [1] and [2]. These are situations in which the actor and character both fit under the same supertag but fall under different subcategories of the supertag, such as a Chinese-British actor playing a Chinese-American character. Thus, the correct set of tags for this situation would be: “asian pacific”, “chinese-british playing chinese-american” NOT “asian pacific”, “chinese-british”, “chinese-american” because the latter version is unclear about which secondary tag refers to the actor and which to the character.