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LOS ANGELES, CA - JULY 30: Comedians Cheech Marin and Tommy Chong announce their upcoming comedy tour ''Light up America'' at the Troubadour Club on July 30, 2008 in Los Angeles, California.

Tommy Chong celebrates his birthday today (May 24), and in the genre of stoner films, he and Cheech Marin are two of its biggest stars (if not the biggest) and the most influential.

Seriously, think about all of the stoner classics you love. Would they have been made had it not been for Cheech & Chong?  There’s a good possibility they wouldn’t, and then we would be living in a world without the wonder that is Matthew McConaughey.

Excuse me…Academy Award-winning actor Matthew McConaughey.

In honor of Chong’s birthday, here’s a look at some outstanding stoner films they may not have happened without Cheech & Chong.

Dazed and Confused

Besides giving us McConaughey, Dazed and Confused also gave us a killer soundtrack.

Dazed and Confused - Trailer

Director Richard Linklater's follow-up to Slacker takes an autobiographical look at some Texas teens (including Ben Affleck and Matthew McConaughey) on their last day of school in 1976, centering on student Randall Floyd (Jason London), who moves easily among stoners, jocks and geeks.

Half Baked

They’re not drug dealers; they’re fundraisers.

 

Friday

This film is 24 years old, and it hasn’t aged a bit.

 

Harold & Kumar Go To White Castle

Obviously, John Cho and Kal Penn deliver outstanding comedic performances, but is there a better actor playing himself cameo than Neil Patrick Harris as “Neil Patrick Harris?”

 

Pineapple Express

The entire cast is incredible, but Danny McBride steals the show.

Erica Banas is a rock/classic rock blogger that loves the smell of old vinyl in the morning.

Erica Banas is rock/classic rock news blogger that loves the smell of old vinyl in the morning.