Famous Fans of Viagra

Osama bin Laden stocked his compound with an herbal potency medicine. From Michael Douglas to Charlie Sheen to Rush Limbaugh, celebrities who enjoy a boost in the bedroom.

AP Photo

AP Photo

Osama Bin Laden

With several wives living at Osama bin Laden’s Pakistan compound, is it any wonder that Navy SEALs found herbal Viagra on his shelf? The 54-year-old al Qaeda leader had several medications—including drugs to treat high blood pressure, ulcers, and shingles—most notably Avena syrup, a natural impotence cure made from, yes, wild oats. “He was neither weak nor frail,” bin Laden’s youngest wife told Pakistani investigators. “He believed in his own medication.” And it must have been effective—bin Laden was reportedly the father of more than 20 children.

Paul Drinkwater, NBC / AP Photo

Michael Douglas

Michael Douglas may be 25 years older than his wife, Catherine Zeta-Jones, but the Oscar-winning actor hasn’t let that slow him down. “God bless her that she likes older guys,” Douglas proudly told the Daily Telegraph last year. “And some wonderful enhancements have happened in the last few years—Viagra, Cialis—that can make us all feel younger.”

Carolyn Kaster / AP Photo

Bob Dole

After losing the presidency in 1996, Bob Dole became an easy punch line for late night comedians when he signed up to be the first celebrity spokesman for Viagra. A prostate cancer survivor, Dole had been part of the original trials for the erectile dysfunction pill. "It is a great drug,” he told Larry King in 1998. “I think we need to learn more about it. There are many men out there, millions of men out there, who suffer from impotence, and this may be the first step.” Still, he understood the comic—and economic—potential of the endorsement. "I wish I'd have bought stock earlier," he joked with King.

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Jimmy Johnson

Football, they say, is a game of inches, and no one knows that better than Jimmy Johnson, who won two Super Bowls as the coach of the Dallas Cowboys and a national championship with the Miami Hurricanes. But when Johnson became the spokesman for the male enhancement pill ExtenZe, he revealed a more intimate side of himself and did commercials with painful double entendres: “Most men want to perform the best they can in just about everything. Isn’t that why we buy the biggest and best of everything? So if you want that maximum performance edge every day, I say go long with ExtenZe. I do.”

Chris Pizzello / AP Photo

James Caan

For more than 40 years, James Caan has had a reputation in Hollywood as a man’s man and a ladies’ man. The Godfather star was once a regular at the Playboy mansion, and a few years ago Caan, 71, joked with the magazine that he needs some help now and then: “Sure, I take a little Viagra now every day but just so I don't piss on my shoes.”

Peter Macdiarmid / Getty Images

Pele

As the greatest soccer player of all time, Pele has scored endorsement deals with Coca-Cola, MasterCard, and Samsung. But in 2002, the Brazilian god landed a job as the spokesman for Viagra, even though he said he didn’t use the product. Pele’s pitch was that he would use it if he needed to, and that men should speak with a doctor about its benefits. But the following year, Pele’s ads were pulled in Brazil when health ministers discovered that his campaign was too effective—young people were abusing impotency drugs to improve their sex lives.

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Hugh Hefner

If anyone were going to be the poster oldster for Viagra, who better than Hugh Hefner? In 2010, the Playboy founder told the New York Times: “I don’t take a lot, but I take it when it’s called for. I make love a couple of times a week, and I take the Viagra when I’m going to be making love. I would say at 84 it helps. It’s God’s little helper.” And Hef will continue to need those miracles—he is marrying his 24-year-old girlfriend Crystal Harris on June 18.

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Rush Limbaugh

In 2006, Rush Limbaugh was returning from vacation in the Dominican Republic when he was detained by customs agents at the Palm Beach airport who found Viagra in his bag that wasn’t prescribed to him. The radio talk show host had recently been under investigation for “doctor shopping” for prescriptions and had admitted an addiction to Oxycontin. But Limbaugh tried to laugh off the incident, telling listeners that he got the pills while stopping off at the Clinton Library and that he thought they were blue M&Ms. He also joked that he was “trying to figure out how Bob Dole’s luggage got on his plane.”

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Charlie Sheen

Since Charlie Sheen is already on a powerful drug called Charlie Sheen, it stands to reason that he doesn’t need the medical benefits of a male potency pill. But in 2006, Sheen spoofed his horndog image in Scary Movie 4 in a scene in which he wakes up with all three of Hef’s Girls Next Door and accidentally downs a bottle of Viagra. The effects are instantaneous and let’s just say he had an unhappy ending.

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Simon Cowell

Some guys are happy to confess they pop a little blue pill, others not so much. In 2008, Simon Cowell admitted to the British Glamour magazine that he had been offered $2 million to be a spokesman for the Pfizer drug. "Last year my agent rang me and said, 'You've been offered an incredibly big deal. It's to be the face of Viagra,'" Cowell told the magazine. But he rejected it with his trademark diplomacy: "I just said, 'Sorry, but that has to be a f---ing insult.'"