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Celebrities who love to gamble

 Celebrities who love to gamble

In its many guises and forms, gambling has been entwined with human history since the earliest of times. The anticipation, thrill of the win, and unpredictable outcomes associated with gambling have attracted people from all walks of life.

Famous and well-known celebrities are often seen in casinos across the world – some even gamble professionally, staking their bets and hedging their skills in tournaments against professional players. This article looks at a few of those prominent celebrities known for their love of gambling.

Ben Affleck

As one in a number of celebrities who love to gamble, Ben Affleck’s affinity for poker and blackjack is no secret. This multi-talented actor, director and writer is known to play poker at amateur and professional levels. He often donates his winnings to charity. Some attest that Affleck has made over a million in gambling profits over the years.

In 2014, the Hard Rock Casino in Las Vegas banned the famous actor for allegedly counting cards when playing blackjack. Affleck never confirmed or denied these rumors. However, the casino’s security service stated that the actor had memorized all the eliminated cards in the game and, in so doing, he amassed his winnings. Despite this, Affleck was only banned from playing blackjack at the Hard Rock, Las Vegas and is still welcome to play any other games at the casino. Backing up this story, some sources also claim the actor has a remarkable memory that boosts his skills.

A California championship win of more than $350,000 earned Ben Affleck a place in the 2004 World Poker Tour. Word has it that he once dished out a $150,000 tip to one of the waiting staff in a casino. Other world-renowned celebrities, such as Leonardo DiCaprio and James Woods, openly praise Affleck’s poker and blackjack skills.

Matt Damon

Matt Damon, famed for his roles in the ‘Bourne’ movies and others, such as Rounders, is a close friend and associate of Ben Affleck. The actor, like his friend, also has a passion for blackjack and poker.

Damon favors Texas hold’em, and it is said that he and Ben Affleck regularly play the game in private, invite-only games.

There are also many rumors surrounding his participation in games organized by Brad Ruderman – an investment fund manager who was sentenced for using client money to play poker. 

In preparation for his role in Rounders, an all-out poker movie released during the late 1990s, Matt Damon approached poker legend Johnny Chan, who showed Damon the ropes. To this day, it is said that Damon uses these skills and knowledge in his poker games.

Cameron Diaz

Charlie’s Angels star, Cameron Diaz, discovered her passion for gambling by chance when she participated in a no-limit hold’em charity event. Talk-show host, Ellen DeGeneres, asked her to take her place in the tournament. Diaz, as a first-time player, soon got the gist of the game and started winning.

Since she seeks out games at nearby casinos whenever she gets the chance, Maxim magazine named Cameron Diaz ‘Miss Texas Hold’em in 2010.

Tobey Maguire

The star of movies such as Spiderman and The Cider House Rules, Tobey Maguire, is an avid poker player. He developed a passion for the game in his teens and has been playing ever since.

Known for favoring private games, Maguire has participated in several games organized for the Hollywood elite. It is believed that this participation inspired the character of Player X in the book and movie Molly’s Game.

In 2004, he lost a significant sum to Ben Affleck in a poker match. Despite this loss, he plays a good Texas hold’em hand.

Jennifer Tilly

Actress Jennifer Tilly is not only a star on screen and stage, she is also an accomplished poker player – one that appeared in the TV game show Celebrity Poker Showdown.

She is considered to be a semi-professional poker player and often participates in tournaments. In 2005, Tilly won $158,625 in the World Series of Poker’s Ladies’ No-Limit Texas Hold’em event and received the event’s coveted bracelet. She attained this coveted accolade after beating 600 other professionals. Following this, she went on to win the third World Poker Tour Ladies Invitational tournament. 

These accomplishments motivated the actress to focus more on poker than acting. In 2008, however, she announced her retirement from the professional poker scene.

George Clooney

George Clooney has played poker since childhood. He has since collaborated with Tobey Maguire and made considerable contributions to privately organized Hollywood games.

Clooney also attempted to establish a Vegas casino. Unfortunately, these ambitions fell flat during the planning stages, and the actor lost millions in the process.

Brad Pitt

Needing no introduction, Brad Pitt co-starred alongside George Clooney in the well-known casino heist movie Ocean’s 11. It was during the filming of this movie that Pitt’s interest in gambling was stirred. He grew to love poker, blackjack, and slot machines., and since the making of Ocean’s 11, has frequented many casinos around the world to stake his bets.

Online gambling gained solid traction over the past two decades – who knows, you may very well be sharing a poker or blackjack table with celebrities who gamble!

Celebrities who love to gamble



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