Cheech Marin biography

Cheech Marin

Date of Birth: July 13, 1946

Born to a police officer in Los Angeles, California, Marin was fond of music in his younger years. "As a little kid, I was a singer and recorded albums. I was always in bands—you name it, I sang it—R&B, jazz, funk, I did it all." He moved to Vancouver, Canada to avoid the draft in the States and studied art. There he met Canadian-born Tommy Chong, and the friendship would spawn a constantly-stoned hippie duo which took viewers by storm in the late 70s and early 80s.

While still in Vancouver, the two honed their comedic personas called Cheech and Chong, in improvisational theater. As their popularity grew, they released a series of comedy albums. In 1978 they came out with their first film, Up in Smoke. The comedy about two bungling hippies who drive a truck across the border, unaware it is filled with drugs, became an enormous hit and was the highest grossing film of the year.

Within the next six years, four more Cheech and Chong films were released. The duo also appeared, in character, in the films It Came From Hollywood (1982), Yellowbeard (1983), and After Hours (1985).

By the mid-80s, the two decided to drop the successful act. Chong went on to direct, and Marin continued to act in films like Ghostbusters II (1989), Troop Beverly Hills (1989) and The Shrimp on the Barbie (1990). He also wanted to be in more films that his kids could watch, so he voiced characters in films like Oliver and Company (1988), FernGully: The Last Rainforest (1992) and The Lion King (1994).

After small roles in tough action films like Desperado and From Dusk Til Dawn, Marin landed a regular role as Joe Dominguez on the long-lasting series Nash Bridges. Working with the Bridges cast for the next seven years, he also found time to continue adding to his feature film work with parts in Tin Cup (1996), Paulie (1998), Spy Kids (2001), Christmas With the Kranks (2004), Grindhouse (2007), The Perfect Game (2009) and Machete (2010).

Marin has been married and divorced twice. He has an adopted daughter from his first marriage, and two children from his second marriage. He lives in Los Angeles.

Cheech Marin Photo