Cedric the Entertainer Brings Product Placement to Broadway

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John Leguizamo gripped a cloth-draped bottle of whiskey at the opening-night party for American Buffalo, a gift, he explained, from his co-star Cedric the Entertainer. "It's Crown Royal with my name on it, and American Buffalo Opening Night," Leguizamo said. Why did Cedric give him that? "I don’t know," Leguizamo said. He tried to pry off the cap, "Come on, have a sip," he urged. We declined, but we were still curious about the gift, so we asked Cedric. "In the play I drink Crown Royal," he told us later. "And then Crown Royal’s been a great supporter of mine for many years. They did The Original Kings of Comedy, they were one of the big sponsors, and they’ve just been behind me, supporting me for many years. So we just thought it was great that we embroidered a bottle and gave them a very rare bottle of Crown Royal with their name and the opening date. We just thought it would be a nice gesture.”

So this is basically product placement in a Broadway play? "Why not?" he said. "You know, that’s the world we’re in. We’re in a recession. My God, we’ve got to do what we’ve got to do." Cedric nixed the whiskey for his other co-star, Haley Joel Osment, and instead presented him with an Xbox 360. NYU student Osment, who was once charged with DUI, is not yet 21. "He can't drink, unfortunately," Cedric told us. "But, you know, I might slip him a little bit anyway. He’s in college — I’m sure he's drinking."

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