Anyone who grew up during the '80s is familiar with the iconic “This is Your Brain On Drugs” campaign. The series of videos were launched by the Partnership for a Drug Free America in 1987, and their most memorable commercial equated using illegal drugs with frying your brain on a frying pan. “Any questions?” he asked rhetorically- But the actor and voice behind the video now vocally supports recreational marijuana in California and abroad.
The ad campaign launched by PDFA has been criticized as a total waste of time and money. For 12 years, The Partnership for a Drug Free America kept afloat solely based on donations from cigarette and alcohol companies Philip Morris and Anheuser-Busch and RJ Reynolds. That explains why neither cigarettes or nor alcohol were ever included in the commercials demonizing drugs for their negative health effects. The PDFA stopped taking donations only after the scandal went public in 1997, after which it was also slammed by The Shafer Library of Drug Policy for spreading numbers of false claims.
Actor John Roselius has inevitably been dubbed the "Egg Man” by an entire generation of pot smokers. Apart from Reagan-era anti-drug commercials, Roselius carved a name for himself as a stuntman working in films such as Con Air and The Truman Show.
Roselius now understands the difference between marijuana and destructive drugs. "I'm 100 percent behind legalizing it, are you kidding?" he asks. "It's healthier than alcohol. And the violence is 99 percent down from alcohol." Roselius told Rooster Magazine in an interview.
Ironically, Roselius admits that he smoked marijuana (and other drugs) before shooting the series of commercials. Roselius explains that marijuana was the “most relaxed” he ever was. Roselius has now been sober for 28 years but adds that if he were to pick up another habit, it'd be weed.
Nowadays, the PDFA takes donations from painkiller peddlers such as the pharmaceutical companies Mallinckrodt Pharmaceuticals and Purdue Pharma, swapping one cartel for another. Roselius' new stance on marijuana should surely put a dent in the effectiveness of the ads we've come to love from the '80s.