From Sean Penn’s Jeff Spicoli to Jeff Bridges’ The Dude, there has been a plethora of iconic cinematic stoners that the public instantly associates with an actor, some of which are still in the public eye. Here’s what five famous cinema stoners now look like.
1. Sean Penn aka Jeff Spicoli in “Fast Times at Ridgemont High”
Aloha, Mr. Hand!
It is an actor’s dream to win such an iconic role so early in a fledgling career, but Sean Penn quickly moved on from Jeff Spicoli, continuing to build a rich filmography that has even seen him make his way into the director’s chair. But, for so many, it is Penn’s Spicoli that not only sums up Fast Times but also the classic cinematic stoner.
2. Rory Cochrane aka Ron Slater in “Dazed and Confused”
You cool, man?
Even though it was produced in the Nineties, nobody epitomizes a Seventies stoner more than Dazed and Confused’s Slater, played to perfection by Rory Cochrane. Being a character that assisted others in getting elevated, from supplying his friends with good weed and being on hand to help make a good bong, he was also good entertainment.
Since his turn as Slater, Cochrane has continued to act in film and television, with his last substantial role as notorious real-life gangster Stephen Flemmi in Black Mass.
3. Kal Penn aka Kumar in “Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle”
Where’s his car, dude?
He’s played a doctor (House) and assisted Lex Luthor (Superman Returns), but it was his role as Kumar that started it all off, seeing him return for two more adventures with his cohort Harold.
In 2009, Penn stepped back from acting to take up another role, this time as Associate Director of the White House Office of Public Engagement for the Obama administration. Now that he’s done his own Mr. Penn Goes to Washington, he might yet step back into the role of Kumar and make another visit to White Castle.
4. Tommy Chong aka Man in “Up In Smoke”
Dave’s not here, man.
Not to be mistaken as “The Man”, since that was definitely Sergeant Stedenko (played by Stacy Keach), Tommy Chong’s Anthony Stoner is one of cinema’s quintessential stoners – not just ‘cause of the surname, either.
In the film debut for the comedic duo, already well known for their stand-up routines and comedy albums, “Cheech & Chong” became synonymous with the stereotypical stoner. While the “Cheech” and “Chong” still make appearances in character, these days, Chong is a well-known marijuana activist, which even saw him serve time in a federal prison.
5. Jeff Bridges aka The Dude in “The Big Lebowski”
Yeah, well… the Dude abides.
Jeff Bridges earned his first Academy Award nomination when he was just 22. While he’s followed that with many more great roles, which earned him five more nominations and one win (Best Actor for Crazy Heart), his place in popular culture was stamped with his performance as “The Dude” in the Coen Brothers’ The Big Lebowski.
While he has never officially revisited the role, Bridges hasn’t turned his back on the character, having written a book on the philosophy of the Dude AKA “Duder” (or, if you’re not into the whole brevity thing, “El Duderino”).