Marijuana is still illegal across much of the U.S., but that hasn't stopped these celebrities from trying to get in on the ground floor of America's small but growing legal pot sector.
Here are seven familiar faces trying to make it big in the marijuana business.
Tommy Chong may not have won "Dancing With the Stars," but Cheech's other half has a backup plan: the Smoke Swipe.
"It's a dry wipe that you brush your clothes off with, or your beard or yourself. It works on the skin, and it eliminates the smell of smoke," he said. "People that sneak out of the office for a quick little toke, they don't have to worry about being spotted when they get back in."
The swipes are made by a company called Reviver and come in reusable packs of 3 for $10.99. Reviver won $150,000 from Shark Tank earlier this year, and its CEO Ben Kusin is betting on Chong being the face of a very profitable modern cannabis movement.
"Cannabis, and the entire industry around cannabis, is in hypergrowth right now," Kusin said.
This isn't Chong's first attempt at getting into the marijuana business. He previously manufactured and distributed a line of handmade bongs, a side business that landed him in federal prison for 9 months. He's still mindful of laws against selling marijuana paraphernalia, but he's expecting some rapid changes in America's policies on pot.
"Just like Obama lifted the restrictions on Cuba, I'm quite sure that in the near future Obama will be lifting all restrictions on marijuana," he said.
No, Bob Marley isn't back from the dead. But he is about to get his very own brand of marijuana.
Marley's family hopes their Marley Natural brand of marijuana will turn the late reggae legend into the "Marlboro Man of Marijuana."
His estate is working with private equity group Privateer Holdings to mass-produce Canadian-grown "heirloom Jamaican cannabis" it will sell in U.S. states that have legalized marijuana. “They understand and respect our father’s legacy,” Bob Marley’s son Rohan Marley said when announcing the venture.
Marley Natural brand weed is scheduled to go on sale in late 2015. The company also will sell cannabis- and hemp-infused creams and lotions and a variety of accessories, including limited edition products inspired by some the senior Marley’s favorite items.
The company is promising to work under a business model “built to ensure that families and communities who have been harmed by prohibition have the opportunity to benefit from the new, legal cannabis economy.”
Marley’s estate earned $20 million last year, but Marley Natural is the first strain of commercial marijuana to bear his name.
Grammy-winner Melissa Etheridge has partnered with a California medical marijuana dispensary to make cannabis-infused wine.
Etheridge, who recently released a new album, refers to her line of wines as a passion project. “We wax bottles in my home. It’s a labor of love,” she said.
Etheridge and Greenway Santa Cruz started small, making a few barrels of reds infused with CBD — THC’s medical non-high inducing counterpart —that sold quickly. “The vineyards were afraid the white wines would turn green and that no one would want to drink a green wine,” Etheridge said.
Etheridge has since expanded her selection of No Label wine tinctures to include a Shiraz, a Grenache and eventually a Cabernet. Here’s how Etheridge describes the effect of CBD-infused wine: “I feel the effects of one glass as I would about three glasses of regular wine.”
Etheridge, who was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2004, said she was previously a “casual rock ‘n roll partaker” in recreational marijuana but began using cannabis medically after her diagnosis.
“I am so grateful California was a medicinal marijuana state and that I was able to do that,” she said. “Now, I want people to understand the therapeutic qualities of this incredible plant that’s been wrongly vilified in the last century.”
Naturally, they’re a best-seller around the world. Chris Folkers, founder of Snoop’s partner Grenco Science, said Snoop vapes are especially popular in France.
“Any time you have a product that’s got both novelty and function it can be a very special thing,” Folkers said.
Snoop Dogg’s first Grenco Science vape pen was released on October 20, 2013, his birthday. He’s since released three others, one of which pays tribute to Snoop's Long Beach roots by incorporating a roadmap of the city into the pen's design and packaging.
“I didn’t want it to just be slapping his name on the box,” Folkers said.
Snoop Dogg isn’t the only with his own line of vaporizers. Marijuana aficionado and hip-hop star Wiz Khalifa just launched a vaporizer line of his own.
Khalifa’s record label Taylor Gang Entertainment also is working with Los Angeles-based Grenco Science, Snoop Dogg’s partner in the vaporizer business. They’ve released two Taylor Gang vaporizers so far and more are in the works.
Khalifa has professed his love for vaporizers through both his music and this YouTube video, in which he mentions an appreciation for being able to “get high on the go and not smell like hella trees.”
You may not know his name, but you know his game.
Tom Bollich co-founded the social games company Zynga — best known for creating the Farmville Facebook game. Now, he’s now CEO of Surna, a Colorado company that sells agricultural equipment to commercial marijuana growers.
After leaving Zynga, Bollich tried a couple of startups before landing in the cannabis industry and eventually at Boulder-based Surna last March. “I was sitting back thinking what’s the next big thing to work on and cannabis looked like the answer,” he said. “There’s not enough innovation in marijuana.”
Surna manufactures equipment designed to keep customers' utility costs — one of the biggest costs in the weed business - under control. The privately held company has 30 employees and clients in Canada, South Africa and Australia as well as across the U.S., Bollich said. Eight months ago, it had 3 employees.
In April, Wolf invested $1.5 million in a Las Vegas company called DigiPath. DigiPath provides laboratory and other services and is backed by David Weiner, a penny-stock financier under investigation by regulators for potential stock-manipulation schemes, the Post said, calling the deal "dicey."
Wolf bought options to purchase the company's shares at 2 cents each. They're currently trading over-the-counter for less than nickel a share. Their 52-week high was at $6 a share. The company has a market cap around $2.5 million.
Who might be next?
These won't likely be the only celebrities you see get into the pot business in coming years.
Oliver Stone has been contemplating getting into the marijuana business since at least 2012.