General Question

rebbel's avatar

What do actors snort, when acting a scene in which they snort a line of cocaine?

Asked by rebbel (33449points) August 15th, 2011

In movies and tv series you see actors snort ‘cocaine’.
I paid attention to it and as far as I can see they don’t cut the scenes in a way that it appears they are snorting…, they truly snort.
So, what is used instead of cocaine?
It must be something which isn’t harmful, I suppose.

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30 Answers

efritz's avatar

Smarties? I know from middle school you can crush and “smoke” them.

Hypocrisy_Central's avatar

Are you even sure that is real powder? Special effects these days can make a crowd out of 12 people and have you walking 3 miles over New York on a cloud. When somone is stuck with a needle, snorts something, pops a pill, I never take it at face value.

Aethelflaed's avatar

I don’t know that they actually do use, but you can crush up any white pill (like Aspirin or Excedrin) and use that.

ucme's avatar

Hey I know this, before I answer though I want to state, without fear of contradiction….I ain’t no movie geek!!
I just know random shit like this, the answer is powdered milk.

jrpowell's avatar

We used to use glucose powder to cut cocaine/speed with before selling.

thorninmud's avatar

This is about the search for the perfect “prop cocaine” for the movie Half Nelson:

” create the cocaine, he [prop master Jeremy Balon] and the director, Ryan Fleck, did a drug test in pre-production where they tried out various lines of fake cocaine–vitamin B12, Methylsulfonylmethane (MSM), sugar, etc.–in the middle of their bustling production office. “To this day, the visual of this still makes me laugh,” said Balon. They ended up going with MSM (a dietary supplement for your joints), which Balon crushed and bagged.” (source)

Lightlyseared's avatar

Well… depending on the actor it probably is cocaine.

deni's avatar

I don’t see why they couldn’t just use flour, or sugar, or smarties, but then again I know little about cocaine so….

sophiesword's avatar

I’m guessing talcum powder would burn their nose.

Brian1946's avatar

If the actor is Chucky Sheen, then it’s probably coke, and that’s straight from the torpedo of truth!

filmfann's avatar

I’m pretty sure they rehearse that a lot.

gondwanalon's avatar

It isn’t healthy to snort anything up your nose. Perhaps there is a filter of some sort inside the straw to stop the powder from entering the actor’s nose? This way the unidentified powder wouldn’t affect/effect the actor’s performance.

yoshiboshi's avatar

I’m just gonna throw a guess out there and say that they put some powder there like flower and fake it. I assume snorting flower isn’t all too pleasant ):... but for that pay it may be worth it.

hobbitsubculture's avatar

I remember a line from Gilmore Girls about what kind of crack to baking soda ratio you can get away with. So maybe baking soda? That does sound especially painful though.

ETpro's avatar

If you don’t use real cocaine and haven’t spent any time watching how people’s faces react when they do snort a line or two, it would be hard to make it convincing. I think powdered asprin would give you a terrible taste in nose and throat, but a very different sort of grimace then glow from what the real stuff produces.

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zensky's avatar

I just read about an actor who said he used brown sugar.

filmfann's avatar

I have snorted white sugar before, and it really burns.

ETpro's avatar

@filmfann So does pure coke. But the anesthetic quality kicks in quickly, and makes it a good sort of burn to buzz.

The stuff is best left alone. The high is sublime, the deviated septum and damage to the bank account are not!

filmfann's avatar

Sugar burns a lot more than coke.

I’ve had my bad moments

ETpro's avatar

@filmfann Rather than snorting some powdered sugar, I will take your word for it. :-)

GabrielsLamb's avatar

You can snort lots of things, most of them burn however. They probably use what you normally cut cocaine with? Baby laxatives, vitamin K is administered in nasally administered ampules sometimes? You can snort any vitamin if you crush it as well as aspirin but that burns like hell!

bobby78's avatar

That is the one time they don’t do real drugs.
I know for a fact they do a kind of baby milk.

redfeather's avatar


JoeBlowSeven's avatar

It really depends on the director and actor but keep in mind that one line of coke will not do any damage plus it’s a lot less painful than snorting aspirin or most of the substances other people have mentioned. It’s rare for an actor to refuse snorting the real deal, but when that’s the case they usually use a mix of flower or artificial sweetener and creatine.

filmfann's avatar

@JoeBlowSeven Is that what they mean when they say an actor keeps messing up his lines?

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