entertainment

20 Facts You Probably Didn’t Know About Actor And Comedian Cheech Marin

Up in Smoke (1978) | lfla.org

Richard Anthony Marin, or simply known as Cheech, is one of the most recognizable Latinos in film mostly due to his role in the hippie counterculture film series “Cheech & Chong.” The 72-year-old comedian has starred in over 20 films since 1978 but has done more than just act. He is a stand-up comedian, actor, voice actor, writer and activist whose made an huge impact on Latino pop culture. Here are a few facts you may not know about the man we all know as Cheech. 

1. Cheech grew up in South Los Angeles.

CREDIT: cheechmarinofficial / Instagram


South LA gave him many of the ideas and skits he used throughout his movie career including the film “Born in East L.A.” It was also there where he developed a reputation as a class clown and sang in his friends’ bands.

2. He was nicknamed “Cheech”after fried pork.

CREDIT: cheechmarinofficial / Instagram


He was Richard Anthony Marin, but nicknamed Cheech as a kid because his uncle said he looked like a little chicharrón (fried pork rind). The name stuck with him growing up and he is now infamously known after the very popular Mexican snack.

3. He voiced several Disney animated films, most notably as a Hyena in the Lion King.

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He has provided his voice in Disney animated films like “Oliver and Company,” “The Lion King,” “Cars,” and most recently “Coco.” Don’t be surprised if the next time you’re watching a Disney movie and you hear Cheech. 

4. Cheech is a veteran writer and an author.

CREDIT: a_readers_diary / Instagram


Cheech recently published an autobiography, “Cheech Is Not My Real Name…But Don’t Call Me Chong,” about his life and the story behind “Cheech and Chong.” He also wrote for Poppin Magazine, a Canadian underground rock magazine and written a handful of children’s books. 

5. Marin is a frequent collaborator with director Robert Rodriguez.

CREDIT: ryeequalsfun / Instagram


Robert Rodriguez is one of the most notable Latino directors in the film industry and it’s no surprise he has worked with Marin seven times. He appeared in last two installments of the “Once Upon A Time In Mexico” trilogy, the “Spy Kids” trilogy, “From Dusk Till Dawn” and “Machete.”

6. He has an honorary doctorate degree.

CREDIT: malibugallery / Instagram


Otis College of Art & Design in Los Angeles gave Marin a Honorary Doctorate degree at its commencement ceremony back in May 2007. Cheech is a big fan of art so this made sense for him to be given such an honor. 

7. Cheech is believed to own one of the biggest private collections of Chicano art.

CREDIT: cheechmarinofficial / Instagram


Cheech Marin has one of the most exclusive private collection of Chicano art in the United States. Much of it formed the core of his exhibition “Chicano Visions: American Painters on the Verge,” which broke attendance records during its groundbreaking 12-city tour during 2001-2007 to major art museums across the United States.

8. He is currently in the works of opening up an arts center in Riverside, California.

CREDIT: cheechmarinofficial / Instagram


The museum, tentatively titled the Cheech Marin Center for Chicano Art, Culture and Industry is scheduled to open in 2020 in Riverside, east of Los Angeles. California gave the stoner comedian $9.7 million this year for funding to open the museum.

9. Marin auditioned to sing for Frank Zappa back in 1967.

CREDIT: cheechmarinofficial / Instagram


Frank Zappa was one of the biggest rock groups during the late ’60s and Marin had a good shot of getting in the group but things didn’t pan out well. He moved to Vancouver, British Columbia in September of that year to dodge the draft during the Vietnam War. Marin would eventually release a solo album later in his career.

10. He is an avid golfer.

CREDIT: cheechmarinofficial / Instagram


He initially disliked the sport until he co-starred in the film “Tin Cup,” which is based on golfing. He also enjoys horse archery, which he practices on a special course that he has built on his private home. 

11. Marin has released two best-selling children’s music albums.

CREDIT: cheechmarinofficial / Instagram


“My Name is Cheech, the School Bus Driver” (1992) and “My Name is Cheech, The School Bus Driver ‘Coast to Coast'” (1997) became best-selling albums. They were both eventually released bilingually. In 2007, “Cheech the School Bus Driver” was turned into a book. 

12. He was in a fraternity in college.

CREDIT: csunkappasigma / Instagram


Marin graduated from Bishop Alemany High School and then studied at California State University, Northridge. He became a member of the Phi Sigma Kappa fraternity. He has previously donated money to support the fraternity throughout the years. 

13. Cheech didn’t actually smoke any marijuana in any of the “Cheech and Chong” films.

CREDIT: cheechmarinofficial / Instagram


It may come as a surprise to some that Cheech and Chong never actually smoked any marijuana during any of their films. The only drug taken in the entire film series was Peyote.

Read: 24 Stages People Who Can’t Handle Weed Go Through When They Get High As Told By Gatos

14. He won the first Celebrity Jeopardy tournament back in 1992.

CREDIT: @HankusMackimus / Twitter


Cheech is pretty good when it comes to game shows as he has appeared twice on “Celebrity Jeopardy” even winning the inaugural contest back in 1992. In 2010, he was victorious again as he beat Anderson Cooper and actress Aisha Tyler on “Celebrity Jeopardy.”

15. Marin was delivering carpets when he met Tommy Chong.

CREDIT: cheechmarinofficial / Instagram


Cheech was working as a delivery man for an upholstery company when he ran into Tommy Chong, a musician who was running an improv comedy troupe from a strip bar owned by his family. After a brief spell with the troupe, Marin and Chong began performing as a musical act, then as stand-up comedy duo. 

16. He has been married three different times.

CREDIT: cheechmarinofficial / Instagram


Marin was first married in 1975 and now is married to his third wife, Natasha who is a Russian pianist. They married in August 2009, and has three children from previous marriages.

17. He had a brief and somewhat successful singing career.

CREDIT: cheechmarinofficial / Instagram


He got his start at 5 years old when his friend’s mother had a recording studio and he sang classic Mexican songs on a record. This got him interested in music and eventually started a rock band in high school where he threw backyard gigs. Before him and Chong became actors they were primarily a singing group which led them to later performing.

18. His dad was a police officer. Which meant he was constantly getting in trouble.

CREDIT: cheechmarinofficial / Instagram


Marin grew up with Mexican American parents, Oscar Marin, a policeman in the Los Angeles Police Department, and his wife Elsa Marin, a secretary. He grew up in a traditional Mexican household where he was constantly getting in trouble throughout grade school.

19. He joined a long list of celebrities that have made a cameo on The Simpsons.

CREDIT: cheechmarinofficial / Instagram

On March 13, 2011 Cheech made a surprise cameo on an episode of The Simpsons. In the episode, The Simpsons family attends a live Cheech and Chong show where Homer attempts to join the duo. The episode had various references to Cheech and Chong skits throughout their respective careers. 

20. Cheech is an avid and true blue fan of the Los Angeles Dodgers.

CREDIT: cheechmarinofficial / Instagram

There is no surprise here since he was born and grew up in Los Angeles, Marin is a huge fan of the LA Dodgers. He even threw out the first pitch at a game back in 2009 and has been seen at countless games throughout the years.

These Athletes From Latin America Are Changing The Game When It Comes To Skateboarding

entertainment

These Athletes From Latin America Are Changing The Game When It Comes To Skateboarding

leticiabufoni / jhankgonzalez1 / Instagram

Skateboarding started as a local pastime in California with just a hand full of people. Now, it is an internationally recognized sport with major competitions taking place around the world. Just like any other sport, athletes are able to make some serious money thanks to endorsements and grand prizes. As the sport grew, so did it’s reach and Latinos began shredding it up like everyone else. Here are 20 Latino who are elevating the game with their own unique styles.

1. Pedro Barros

CREDIT: pedrobarrossk8 / Instagram

Pedro Barros is a force to be reckoned with when it comes to skateboarding. He dominates every competition he participates in and there’s not quetions why. Barros is one of the most fierce competitors taking home first place prizes in several competitions proving his place among the tops skateboarders in the world.

2. Carlos Ribeiro

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Carlos Ribeiro will make all of his competitors feel a little inferior. The skateboarder is always elevating the technicality of his tricks leaving jaws on the floor. He nails his tricks with ease and will only get better from here.

3. Louie Lopez

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Don’t let Louie Lopez’s youth fool you. The young skateboarder is making a name for himself in a field of talented skateboarders. His intensity is known in the skateboarding community and his skills will leave you glued to his performance. He is definitely someone you should be watching if you enjoy skateboarding.

4. Luan Oliveira

CREDIT: luanmatriz / Instagram

Brazil is creating some of the best talent known in the skateboarding wold. Luan Oliveira is arguably one of the best examples of Brazilian excellence in the sport. Not only does he nail his tricks, his speed will leave you flabbergasted. That’s why he has become one fo the biggest names in the sport.

5. David González

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There is a good reason this man was was named the 2012 Skater of the Year. He is a beast when he is on a board and any video you see on social media about him will prove it. Check him out and you’ll understand the power this man wields on a skateboard.

6. Diego Najera

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Diego Najera’s talent is very obvious. He debuted with an amazing run for Primitive Skateboards and destroyed the competitions as a newbie after that. He has a sense of control on the board that will intimidate any competitor. He is just beginning to grow within the sport and it’s everything.

7. Leticia Bufoni

CREDIT: leticiabufoni / Instagram

Leticia Bufoni is one of the most Instagram loved skateboarders in the world. But don’t let that change your concept of her talent. She is willing to risk injury and spend times in the hospital to push her skills. Oh, she also became the first female event champion of Nike’s Street League Super Crown.

8. Ivan Monteiro

CREDIT: ivanmonteirosk8 / Instagram

Ivan Monteiro is what the future of skateboarding looks like. He is young, charismatic and very talented. He is consistenyl in the top ten in all of his competitions and he should definitely be proud.

9. Tiago Lemos

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Tiago Lemos is one of the rawest skateboarders in the sport. His style is so unique and impressive that he has caught the eyes and money of corporate sponsors. Tbh, that’s what all athletes want: to make money doing what they love.

10. Kelvin Hoefler

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Kelvin Hoefler is another skateboarder that doesn’t brag about his skills. Instead, he just let’s his skateboarding skills speak for themselves. Since he broke out into the scene, he has been a fierce and well-known competitor on the skateboarding scene.

11. Carlos Iqui

CREDIT: carlosiqui / Instagram

Carlos Iqui uses his technical skills to launch full-on assaults against the competition. Iqui’s videos show his masterful take on any trick, flip, or skill known to skateboarders. He is someone who will change the face of skateboarding, for sure.

12. Daniel Cuervo

CREDIT: danielcuervodr / Instagram

Skater Daniel Cuervo is absolutely on fire. He was the first pro skater to come out of the Dominican Republic and now he’s competing amongst the greatest with insanely consistent runs. His style is so effortless he makes skating half-pipes look easy.

13. Nelson Garza

CREDIT: nelsongarza1 / Instagram

This skater from throws it down in the streets. Hitting huge handrails and getting tech on ledges is what he does best. After putting together an insane ten-minute part for Converse, its obvious he’s here to make a mark.

14. Jhancarlos Gonzalez

CREDIT: jhankgonzalez1 / Instagram

Jhancarlos Gonzalez turned Colombia into his personal skatepark. From stair sets in shopping centers to huge drops in residential neighborhoods. His effortless style and massive pop makes for some very interesting video parts.

15. Juan Carlos Aliste

CREDIT: juancarlosaliste / Instagram

Skateboarder Juan Carlos Aliste continues to build up his name in the skate community with the smoothest style imaginable and incredible catches on every trick. Juan Carlos never has to worry about snapping boards because he always lands bolts.

16. Matias Dell Olio

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Matias Dell Olio went from tearing up the streets of Mar de Plata to riding with Nike. It won’t be long before he starts taking gold amongst the best in the world.

17. Santiago Rodriguez

CREDIT: santirod89 / Instagram

Beginning his career in Uruguay, Santiago Rodriguez has developed an unparalleled determination to land the techest tricks in skateboarding. His Transworld part is a great example of his skills. While combining four tricks into one may sound impossible to some, but it’s just another day’s work for Rodriguez.

18. Pamela Rosa

CREDIT: pamelarosaskt / Instagram

Pamela Rosa has a fast paced and flawless style. She is amongst the greatest in the world competing in Street League and finishing on the podium at X Games.

19. Eugenia Ginepro

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Hailing from Argentina, Eugenia Ginepro is now making waves all over the world. Nobody can compete when it comes to lines. The only thing greater than her consistency is her footwork when skating vert.

20. Anacleta Rendón

CREDIT: anacletarendon / Instagram

This skater perfected her style in the streets of Colombia. With effortless flow in vert and the cleanest grinds on any rail or ledge, she is ready to throw down at any spot that gets in her way.

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