Interview: Tommy Chong (Cheech & Chong)
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Date Stamp: August 22, 2007
T: Let's get into your I-Chong book which was recently released.
TC: Meditations From The Joint is another title for it. I have always been a writer. I've written all my life. Like a dog chews on a bone. It's very theraputic for me. So, while I was in jail I had wrote, and then when I got out of jail Cheech and I did a lil' reunion thing. It went over well for me because I had been on stage after we broke up so I could handle it but Cheech was definitely not the old Cheech that I knew. But Simon & Schuster were at the show, and so they loved what I did on stage and they asked me if there was a book in my closet somewhere. And I said, there was. So, I sent 'em what I had and they turned it into the I Chong, and the rest is history (laughs).
T: I like the alternate title, I hadn't heard that.
TC: It got me another deal. I'm working on the Cheech & Chong unauthorized biography.
T: Obviously, there's been a lot of talks over the years about another Cheech & Chong movie but as you've said, Cheech isn't the same guy. Have you ever considered the Sons of Cheech & Chong for movie?
TC: I wrote a play with Cheech Jr. and Chong Jr. in it. That's really being worked on as we talk. I also wrote a Cheech-less Chong movie. The movie I wrote for Cheech and I for Newline that we were supposed to do, Cheech just did not want to do any of the old routines or any of the old sensibilities. I don't know really what the fuck he wants to do. He just wants to get paid, that's my take on it. So, I wrote a Cheech-less Chong movie where my character picks up a fugitive who is disguised like Cheech. I really think he's Cheech. He's changed a bit, he's a lil' heavier and a lil' whiter but I really believe it's Cheech. We're just right now writing the script. I've never stopped writing. I've always written scripts for the genre that I'm known for. I just haven't gotten around to taking it to the other step of getting money and making a movie. I just enjoy the writing part. This one will probably get made and if it does, it will probably put me in the zillionaire stratosphere.
T: Yesterday you were saying you want to be the drug czar of the US.
TC: Yeah, I'm still pursuing that one. Just trying to fit it in my schedule. What I really want to do is go on fact finding tours around the world, checking out how different countries handle there drug problem...and while I'm at it checking out all these people's different drugs too. In the line of work, it's definitely part of the job. I would run for president but being foreign born I would never win.