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5 Celebrity Stoners who Later Renounced Marijuana

Weed enjoys a somewhat curious status, being illegal yet being technically less dangerous than several drugs that are currently legal—including alcohol. An awful lot of people share that view, so it’s unsurprising that a large number of celebrities (including politicians) have tried a bit of herb every now and again. Of course, there are those with squeaky-clean images who have renounced the drug, but that’s often because they stand a lot to lose if they don’t. Others have given up to set an example, whether it’s to fans or to relatives.

1. Michael Phelps

Last year, an image of Michael Phelps surfaced of him doing pot from a bong. Judgment was pronounced by many people that if he did weed then he could be doing performance-enhancing drugs—which is nonsense. Weed is not exactly performance enhancing in the slightest—who wants a swimmer who wanders off in the middle of an event, grabs a few munchies, and then falls asleep in the corner? Phelps, of course, was mortified, but he quickly stated that he was ashamed of having done the drug. Of course, the fact his sponsors might throw a fit if he hadn’t could’ve had something to do with the speed of his response. And you mustn’t forget that he’ll happily consume legal drugs (caffeine and alcohol).

2. Robert Downey Jr.

Everyone’s favorite former-addict-come-good, Robert Downey Jr. was perhaps as well-known for his antics off stage as he was on. Of course, with a narcissistic personality and a keen awareness of his talent and charm (we’re not sucking up), RDJ was bound to self-destruct in a big fireball. Except he didn’t. Instead, he actually got clean after a lot of missteps. Now, he makes the perfect Iron Man, and his battle with addiction is becoming a fading memory in the public’s eye.

3. Paul McCartney

Paul McCartney is one of the two members of the Fab Four remaining, and he’s finally kicked the habit after becoming a dad again. He gave up at the age of 70 because he felt it was the responsible thing to do, which is understandable. He apparently has smoked dope since he was introduced to it in 1964 by Bob Dylan, and he was famously chucked out of Japan in 1980 for possession. While giving up the habit of a lifetime might be hard, McCartney will likely have solid support behind him from his friends, family and fans.

4. Natalie Portman

Natalie Portman smoked the dreaded green when she was in college. While she has occasionally dabbled with the stuff since, she’s now renounced it, saying she’s getting too old (at the age of 31) to smoke the stuff now. Since falling pregnant, getting married, and acting in more movies than any of us have fingers or toes (hopefully), we’re surprised she even has time to breathe, let alone light up. By the end of 2013, she will have been credited in 35 different movies. If that’s not enough, the Israeli national also graduated from Harvard with a degree in psychology. It just goes to show that the classic college stoner type rarely holds true.

5. Brad Pitt

The last one on this list is Brad Pitt, and for good reason. His marijuana habit was notorious throughout Hollywood, and for good reason. He’d shared spliffs with most of the pot-smoking stars, including George Clooney and Morgan Freeman. He admitted in an interview that his habit may have been down to depression: “I was doing the same thing every night and numbing myself to sleep—the same routine: Couldn’t wait to get home and hide out.” Brad says that what spurred him on to quit were the scenes of abject poverty he saw, and it encouraged him to get clean and focus on something bigger than him.

All of these stars quit marijuana. Some, quit because they didn’t have time and lost interest in the drug. This happens to millions of people throughout the world. Others quit because they realized they’d gone too far. In extreme cases—especially ones that deal with multiple chemical dependencies (that means you’re addicted to more than one drug, including alcohol)—you can seek help from an addiction clinic, just like Robert Downey Jr. It may not always work the first time, but with the right mindset and perseverance, it is possible to get and stay clean.

Most of us aren’t celebrities, so there’s little that’s charming or easily brushed off about addiction as so often seems the case in Hollywood. For help with an addiction, call our toll-free hotlines at to speak to treatment advisors 24/7.

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