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Famous Modern Male Icons Who Enjoy Cigars

Jan 18, 2008
After years of decline, cigar smoking abruptly returned to popularity in America in the 1990s, with cigar bars and shops springing up even in smaller towns and cities. Some of America's great male icons of sports and entertainment were quick to pick up the habit, while others had been closet cigar smokers for years.

Jack Nicholson
The three-time Oscar-winning star (1936-) of such films as Easy Rider (1969), Chinatown (1974), The Shining (1980) and Batman (1989) was an avid cigarette smoker in the early 1990s, when he began playing golf. But he found himself chain-smoking to a dangerous extent during intense rounds - up to half a pack per round, reportedly - and so he switched to cigars after the fifth hole. (Though no form of nicotine is "safe," cigars are associated with far less risk of cancer than are cigarettes.) His favorite brand is Montecristo. He has since appeared on many magazine covers with his now-trademark stogie.

Michael Jordan
Often cited as the greatest basketball player of all time, Jordan (1963-) is also a fan of Montecristos, which he was known to smoke on the team bus. Teammates might have wanted to complain, but, as fellow Chicago Bull John Salley once said, "We were just apostles. Jesus was smoking, that's all there is to it. What are you going to say?"

Jordan apparently keeps his cigar smoking under control, given that he remains, even in retirement, a formidably in-shape athlete. The former University of North Carolina star joined the Bulls in 1984, and transformed basketball with his near-superhuman leaping ability; besides his plethora of MVP awards, Olympic gold medals, and more broken records than you'd find on Dick Clark's basement floor after a drunken rage, he also remains one of the few athletes to maintain a double career with his mid-90s run as a baseball minor leaguer (inspired by his late father's oft-expressed desire to see his son play professional baseball). Since his third and last retirement in 2003 (from the Washington Wizards), Jordan has continued playing golf in celebrity tournaments; he also owns a motorcycle-racing team.

Francis Ford Coppola
The Godfather director (1939-) learned how to smoke cigars from legendary ex-Warner Brothers head Jack Warner, who hired Coppola straight out of film school to helm the music Finian's Rainbow (1968). Coppola also, eventually, inherited a gold-and-silver cigar cutter from Warner. Their relationship is somewhat ironic, given that it was Coppola, with his friends George Lucas and Steven Spielberg, who helped transform Hollywood during the 1970s, making it (temporarily) more receptive to visionary independent films, such as Coppola's own The Conversation (1974) and Apocalypse Now (1979), and his friend George Lucas's THX-1138 (1970) and American Graffiti (1973), both of which Coppola produced. Coppola also likes a little wine with his cigar habit (presumably not at the same time): he owns a California winery.

John Grisham
An ex-lawyer and the biggest-selling novelist of the 1990s, Grisham (1955-) smokes a nice, moderate four cigars a week. Though he's best known for his hugely popular legal thrillers - such as The Firm (1991) and A Time To Kill (1988) - Grisham's humanitarian and charitable work is perhaps his most important legacy.

This includes his missionary and relief work in Brazil, as well as his service on the board of the Innocence Project, a nonprofit group that uses DNA testing to exonerate wrongfully convicted men and women. (This work may have inspired his 2006 bestseller, The Innocent Man, a nonfiction account of the railroading of two innocent men for the murder of a cocktail waitress.) Grisham is also notable for his support of talented writers less commercially successful than himself, endowing large scholarships to the creative-writing program at University of Mississippi and helping to found the high-quality literary magazine Oxford American.
About the Author
CigarFox provides the finest cigars that include cigar brands like cohiba, gurkha and many more. Other cigar products include cigar humidors, cigar boxes, and cigar accessories like Zippo Lighters.
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