About

Higher Ground: The World’s First Traditional Talk Show about Cannabis Culture

It’s The Daily Show meets Good Morning America…

Just with More Stoned People.

Hollyweed, CA

Higher Ground is the first news and entertainment program to use the traditional talk show format to highlight modern cannabis culture. Exploring marijuana with a mainstream mindset, Higher Ground explores the emerging cannabis lifestyle by tossing aside the cliches of the Reefer Madness era.

Hosted by award-winning journalist Michael Stusser, Higher Ground covers the emerging canna-culture through humorous clip-show monologues, celebrity interviews, on-the-street field pieces (with periodically stoned correspondents), and parodies such as “Comedians in Cars Smoking Cannabis.”

 

Cannabis isn’t just about getting as high as a kite. In additional to the political legalization taking place across the country, cannabis is leading to mind-boggling medical breakthroughs, innovative products and inventions, as well as celebrity brands involving health, lifestyle and beauty. From gourmet edibles to Marijuana Moms to seniors embracing weed for arthritis, pot culture is becoming pop culture. Rather than shy away from this emerging movement, Higher Ground explores it with an irreverent – and professional – attitude.

From Reefer Madness to Cannabis Connoisseur: Support at all all-time high.

Fifty-five million Americans currently use marijuana (22% of the population), and over half of all adults have tried it. Support for legalization is at an all-time high (nearly 60%) – along with the support for medical marijuana (84%). Of the 55 million pot users, a majority of those (52%) are millennials. Surprisingly, 54% of the adults who use pot are parents. The hard-hitting and topical Jon Stewart brand of journalism is also more popular than ever (including The Daily Show, and alumni Stephen Colbert, Samantha Bee and John Oliver). Higher Ground embraces this edu-tainment approach – using advocacy journalism along with a sense of humor to bring the cannabis culture to the masses.

Ninety-five percent of the U.S. population currently lives in a state with some form of legal access to marijuana. Recreationally legal in eight States (including California, the sixth-largest economy in the World), another 29 states (plus D.C.) have laws on the books for medical marijuana. This cultural zeitgeist is not only increasing viewing limits, it’s bringing it audiences in key demographics who want smart, informative and entertaining programming about the people and products behind modern-day cannabis. The time has come for a show about the modern ways we use “laughing grass.”

Cannabis is the fastest growing industry in the country.

Marijuana sales in North America reached $7 billion in 2016, and is expected to jump to $21 billion by 2021. Higher Ground highlights the innovations, trends, and ganjapreneurs involved in this Green Rush. Whether it’s breaking political news on the legalization movement, innovations in cannabis health, or talking to the artists and entertainers inspired by the wacky weed, Higher Ground has cannabis content covered. And, of course, Higher Ground explores and embraces the elevated aspects of getting high. Whether it’s Stoned Symphony Nights, demonstrating the Keureg for Cannabis, or highlighting the World’s 1st Marijuana Drive-Through, we hit the high-lights.

The High End: The Most Expensive, Outrageous, Over-the-Top Cannabis Products in the World

HIGHER GROUND: THE SHOW FORMAT

Using tried-and-true staples from the network TV talk shows, Higher Ground features highlights and comedic commentary from the week’s top news, employs celebrity interviews, regular sketches, and field reports from seasoned correspondents. The show will create original videos and across-screen programming full of entertaining and informative content on the fastest-growing lifestyle subject in the country.

Show Segments Include:

Opening monologue: Humorous commentary on the most talked about headlines of the week culled from viral videos, pop culture, news clips, celebrities and talking heads galore. Additional news items will include legalization updates, experts in the field of medical marijuana, business and though-leaders, as well as celebrity and entertainment items related to cannabis.

Field segments: Reporters including Lauren Weedman (The Daily Show, HBO’s Hung and Looking), Marty Riemer (Live from the Moldy Basement) and Mary White (Cooking with Cannabis) meet with ganjapreneurs, attend cannabis-infused festivals, try new products and conduct stoner-on-the-street interviews. We will also pick up random tourists on our giant WeedBus, and (re)introduce them to legal cannabis.

Interviews:

Not solely focused on cannabis, Higher Ground’s mission is to Elevate the Dialogue – on politics, art, sexuality and race, pop and cannabis culture – allowing for an infinite number of guests, skits and interviews on a wide range of topics. Higher Ground aims to truly be the world’s premier news and entertainment program featuring comedy, conversation and cannabis. In addition experts directly related to cannabis, Higher Ground will feature interviews with key figures in medicine, science, law enforcement, professional sports and politics.

 

And let’s not forget Hollyweed! Higher Ground includes a “Live from the Green Carpet” segment that makes Entertainment Tonight look downright sober. In addition to featuring cannabis advocates such as Seth Rogan, Sarah Silverman, Morgan Freeman, Jason Silva, Zach Galifianakis, Kristen Stewart, Bill Maher, Whoopi and Snoop, we’ll interview stars from the plethora of cannabis-friendly films and shows such as “Broad City (Ilana Glazer and Abbi Jacobson), “High Maintenance,” SNL, Workaholics, Silicon Valley, Buds, Archer and more.

Musical Guests. Culled from our long-running podcast, “Live From the Moldy Basement,” Higher Ground will feature performances from up-and-coming talent. Higher Ground also looks to book long-devoted marijuana musicians including Rihanna, Melissa Etheridge, Willie Nelson, Lady Gaga, John Mayer and more!

Cannabis-Themed Programming is Getting the Green Light.

Several shows have been given the green-light for 2017 and beyond including “Disjointed” (Netflix) from producer Chuck Lorre (and starring Kathy Bates), “Budding Prospects” from Amazon, and continued seasons of “High Maintenance” (HBO), “Martha and Snoop’s Potluck Dinner Party” (VH1) and “Bong Appetit” and “Weediquette” (VICELAND). Two additional pot-elated shows are in development: “Buds” (NBC) from Adam Scott, and “Humboldt” (Sony Pictures Televison) with John Malkovich attached to star.

ABOUT HIGHER GROUND

Higher Ground is a media-arts production platform that creates highly-produced video assets including our flagship satirical-news program, a syndicated column on the legalization movement (Stusser’s “Higher Ground” appears in weekly newspaper across the country), along with viral social-media parodies. The creators of Higher Ground include award-winning journalist and documentary filmmaker Michael A. Stusser (“Sleeping with Siri”), The Production Foundry’s Mark Goodnow, long-time radio DJ Marty Riemer (420 Funny Festival), and Senior Producer Tina Nole (“The Boss Show.”) The Higher Ground production facilities include The Production Foundry (in Seattle) and Twisted Scholar (based in Los Angeles). 

Higher Ground explores and celebrates the elevated aspects of getting high. Founded during a revolutionary time of economic and spiritual transformation in the legalization movement, the brand will document and chronicle this incredible time in our history, and advocate for the legalization of cannabis (along with civil rights, gay rights, and human rights), and embrace the end of – yet another – prohibition.

Members of the abolitionist press, Higher Ground combines advocacy journalism with a sense of humor to bring the cannabis culture to the masses.

Higher Ground: Coming Out of the Cannabis Closet

For more information, contact michael@michaelstusser.com