From Hollywood to Hollyweed

Cannabis takes over the concrete jungle.

Thanks to a prank that altered the infamous Hollywood sign earlier this year, many are jokingly calling it Hollyweed. The numbers of entertainers advocating for cannabis has only elevated cannabis awareness. In fact, some celebrities are already or are getting involved in the cannabis industry themselves. These celebrities have a large influence on people in the world, especially where cannabis is legal. The negative stereotype of cannabis is shattering and Hollywood is representing this growing trend. Not long ago, cannabis was considered a dangerous drug. Stuck under the stigma, cannabis was portrayed as a part of dissident cultures such as “hippies”, rebellious youth and the hip-hop culture, to name a few.

The stars that promote cannabis may be changing the perception of many people. There are plenty of celebrities that admit to cannabis use. While some are for pleasure and allure, others benefit from the medical components. Since cannabis has been legalized, related medias across varying platforms have been popping up like weeds. This substance has been widely used in music videos, lyrics, movies, and now, more related shows are arriving through popular media such as “Disjointed” on Netflix.

Many celebrities support or claim to occasionally partake in cannabis, even before it was legalized. Back in 2003, in an interview with The Guardian, Morgan Freeman advised: “never give up the ganja”. He has used cannabis since 2008 after a car accident. In 2007, Kirsten Dunst said “If everyone smoked weed, the world would be a better place,” to the Daily Mail.

One star who started a medicinal cannabis business is Whoopi Goldberg, who uses a vape pen to aid her glaucoma. She said, “As I write my debut column for The Cannabist, talking about this newly legal weed and admiring the states that have had the foresight to legalize medical marijuana, I’m most tempted to extol the virtues of the vape pen.” 2014. She now has her own line of balms, rubs and soaks specifically designed to relieve menstrual
pain called Whoopi & Maya.

Not to anyone’s surprise, Tommy Chong, from the famous comedy-duo, Cheech and Chong, has influenced the medical cannabis industry. In an interview with Forbes, “We’ve found the best growers, tapped into their supply source, and used my name and celebrity to promote their product.” His company is a distribution service named
Chong’s Choice which offers a small variety of cannabis products.

In the country music genre, everyone knows that Willie Nelson is known to be an avid cannabis user; he has intentionally built a reputation for it. He even has his own brand ‘Willie’s Reserve‘ first sold n Colorado and Washington and now in many other states where cannabis is legal.

The famous pop star Rihanna, attended the Cannabis Cup in Jamaica where she said
“MaRihanna by Rihanna is truly the first mainstream cannabis brand in the world and I’m
proud to be a pioneer”. She has recently designed her own cannabis brand.

Another famous brand is Marley Natural, of course, named after Bob Marley also a well-known cannabis enthusiast. This company supports local farmers in Jamaica, promotes diversity in their business, and has a program for those with criminal
backgrounds to have employment and character training.

Leafs by Snoop offers flower, wax and gummy treats. On the About Us section on his website, Calvin Broadus, better known as Snoop Dogg wrote “Leafs by Snoop is my way of sharing the experience I have with the finest quality cannabis one could imagine. Let’s medicate, elevate and put it in the air!”  Calvin is also a partner in the cannabis investment company, Casa Verde Capital that focuses on the ancillary cannabis businesses. Casa Verde Capital (CVC) maintains a view that the cannabis industry will be among the most compelling investment themes of our generation.

Wiz Khalifa offers his own strain evidently named Khalifa Kush which is claimed to be a descendant from an OG strain. He has his own greenhouses to cultivate his personalized strain.

Now you know a few celebrities are involved in making money with cannabis, let’s introduce you to those who use cannabis as treatment. During her battle with relapsing cancer, Olivia Newton-John began using cannabis oil. Her condition worsened to the point where she had cancel at least half of her tour.  The pain was so much, and she couldn’t even walk. “My husband’s a plant medicine man so he grew cannabis for me and made tinctures for me to take for pain and inflammation and so many other things that cannabis can do,” She on 60 Minutes in an interview. After her treatment of medicinal cannabis use, her condition improved significantly.

Another celebrity who uses cannabis as treatment is Melissa Etheridge who was diagnosed in 2004 with breast cancer. She then realized the substance wasn’t “bad” as it has been portrayed as it helped her condition. Micheal J Fox used cannabis to help with his with his Parkinson’s disease as well.

These stars have helped shape the world of cannabis. Those who are part of the industry and those who use it medicinally aid in ridding cannabis of its negative stigma. These celebrities play a large role in our lives via media. They are examples of the culture becoming more aware of the positive effects that cannabis may provide.