celebrities marijuana industry entrepreneurs

Whoopi Goldberg, Woody Harrelson and Other Celebrities Who Have Decided to Become Marijuana Industry Entrepreneurs

  • In recent years more and more public figures have come out in the public defence of marijuana. On stage at their concerts, in their films, and in interviews in various media outlets they have transmitted messages of support for the cannabis culture. However, some have gone a step further and decided to invest to produce their own cannabis products, personalised and in line with their statements.
celebrities marijuana industry entrepreneurs

Cologne, makeup, wine, clothing and now ... cannabis. Celebrities are investing their money in all kinds of businesses, and increasingly banking on the world of marijuana. Whoopi Goldberg is only the latest to join the list of those who, in addition to upholding marijuana's use, are investing in it. Who are the others?

Whoopi Goldberg

Although best known for her roles in films like Ghost and Sister Act, Whoopi Goldberg is also a leading advocate for the medical use of marijuana. In a column in The Cannabist the popular actress talked about her "love affair" with her vaporiser, which has helped her to cope with the headaches she suffers as a result of her glaucoma. "There are alternatives to deal with the pain. And this is particularly magical," she said.

Goldberg has now announced the creation of a line of cannabis-based products to alleviate menstrual pain, which she claims to have suffered for a long time. On this effort she has partnered with Maya Elisabeth, a northern California grower, in order to create a company (dubbed "Whoopi & Maya") that will market a kind of kit to deal with this discomfort. Chewable tablets, oils, teas, massage creams and bath salts will provide women with relief from the pain they suffer during their periods.

Snoop Dogg

Snoop Dogg has made no secret of the fact the he likes (loves, actually) cannabis: his Instagram account is packed with photos of him smoking like a chimney, and more than one song of his has been inspired by the plant. Now, after more than 20 years consuming it openly, even on stage, Snoop Dogg has designed his own line of marijuana products under the Leafs By Snoop label. He markets buds, edibles and concentrates that can be purchased in Colorado dispensaries. The US media believes that the rapper aims to become the Martha Stewart of cannabis.

However, his foray into the business does not end there. A few months ago the artist launched a website entirely devoted to marijuana that aspires to be a kind of encyclopaedia. Backed by celebrities like Miley Cyrus and Seth Rogen, the website created by the rapper includes videos with information and recipes, interviews with celebrities, and articles exploring the effects of cannabis in depth.

Willie Nelson

Willie Nelson boasts several milestone achievements when it comes to marijuana. Known as America's most famous stoner, he recently confirmed that he had smoked a joint on the roof of the White House with one of President Jimmy Carter's sons, this many years before Snoop Dogg said that he had done so in the building's bathrooms, and Seth Rogen tweeted that he also belonged to the select club of people who had smoked in the presidential residence.

Now the country singer has launched his own brand of cannabis: Willie's Reserve. With this initiative he is also sending a message: he believes in the environmental aspect of the process and that it represents a great opportunity to revitalise small farms and grow "clean," low-impact products. In his view large corporations should be kept away from business with the crop, and he intends to go up against them to ensure they do not get involved.

Melissa Etheridge

Many celebrities have become convinced of cannabis's benefits in the treatment of medical problems. Case in point: rock singer Melissa Etheridge, a multiple Grammy award winner, and holder of an Oscar for her music, now publicly endorses legalisation. After using medical cannabis during her bout with breast cancer, the singer decided to jump into the market, and has done so with a peculiar product: a line of wines featuring cannabis, developed along with the Greenway Compassionate Relief dispensary.

"People use marijuana for many reasons. I needed it to help me get through some hard times. I used it every day during the chemo. It gave me an appetite, so I could eat and stay strong. It also helped me with depression, and relieved my gastrointestinal pain. I have been a smoker of medical marijuana for nine years," she explained in her opinion section on CNN.

Woody Harrelson

Some famous figures are also getting involved in the management of dispensaries in several states where medical marijuana is legal. The actor from True Detective and Zombieland, Woody Harrelson, was one of nearly 60 applicants who requested permission last spring to open one of the first medical marijuana dispensaries in Hawaii.

Although Hawaii became the first US state to legalise medical cannabis through a legislative process (16 years ago), it had not yet taken the step of issuing licenses to dispensaries. The applicants had to have 1 million dollars in cash in order to apply for a license, plus $100,000 for each dispensary location. And all had to have been residents of Hawaii for more than five years. And there was Woody, born in Texas, but with a house on Maui, asking for a license in Honolulu. His request was rejected.

The Marley Family

Cedella Marley inherits the dual legacy of her mother and father. Ziggy Marley's big sister is the creative mind behind Marley Nature, a brand of cannabis products inspired by the Jamaican musician that has been distributing its products since last February in California. It has already become a big business, thanks to a strategy based on expanding the copyright on the image of Bob Marley, which, 30 years after his death, continues to generate huge profits. Marley? Marijuana? Why didn't we think of that before?

Marley Natural marijuana produces high-end marijuana, grown outdoors under strictly natural conditions, without pesticides, chemicals or fertilisers. It offers four kinds of grass: Marley Green, Marley Gold, Marley Red and Marley Black, the latter being a highly-concentrated class of cannabis produced for "experienced users." The brand, supported by Silicon Valley investment funds, has been so well received that it has expanded its range of products to include items for body care, such as soaps and oils.

Wiz Khalifa

The rapper Wiz Khalifa is another celebrity who has gone from expressing support for cannabis to getting involved in the business. His strain, Khalifa Kush, became popular thanks to the dispensary The Cookie Co. 415, in San Francisco, but he has recently taken his investments to another level.

The artist has teamed up with Colorado-based RiverRock Cannabis and created a new product line including the strain that became so popular in California. In interviews the rapper has attached great importance to finding the most suitable strain for each smoker, and to each user knowing what type of product he is consuming. He also openly endorses recreational use.

The Game

Taking a cue from fellow rappers, The Game has been one of the latest celebrities to join the famous figures now investing in the industry. After repeatedly recognising that he consumes marijuana, and praising its benefits, the rapper has chosen to associate his image with a line of cannabis products. In collaboration with the company G Farma Brands, he has launched a line of pre-rolled marijuana cigarettes (for those aficionados who do not want to roll their own reefers) and a line of drinks. Traditional, pink and strawberry lemonade, all with cannabis oil. They sound good, but you have to try them.

Tommy Chong

Comedian, actor and musician Tommy Chong is also a prominent pro-marijuana activist whose films featured cannabis at a time when it was beginning to be condemned at the social level: Up in Smoke (1978) and Nice Dreams (1981). In 2003 the marijuana icon spent nine months in a federal prison, accused of selling hookahs and sending them to other states. Cannabis has, nevertheless, remained a constant part of his life. He is now launching his own brand of pre-rolled joints, with his rosy face on the packages, with the brand name Chong's Choice. And after so many years of experience consuming, his taste just has to be good.

Kevin Smith

Director Kevin Smith, who credits Seth Rogen for his current fondness for marijuana, has also launched his own cannabis product. Although he is a regular consumer, in his case it was only to promote his horror movie Tusk. In 2014, the L.A. dispensary Bud & Roses created two customised strains, dubbed "White Walrus" and "Mr. Tusk," which formed part of the marketing campaign for a film that, unfortunately, was a bomb at the box office. But the director continues to be very much connected to cannabis: he has just shot a pilot for a comedy series about marijuana that will be called "Hollyweed".

Another figure who could have joined the business, but has not done so, is the singer Rihanna. Although the artist uses marijuana openly, and there were rumours circulating that she was going to launch her own product line, her agent denied that she was going to take this step. Maybe she, or the multifaceted Miley Cyrus, also an outspoken advocate of marijuana, will be next to back this burgeoning show business trend.


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