If you are a fan of the World Series of Poker televised on cable, you may recognize some of the more famous celebrity gamblers who return year after year to vie for the coveted WSOP Bracelet.
We thought it would be fun to highlight a few of the most well-known players, both men and women, in this genre.
You may have seen Annie Duke on Donald Trump’s “The Apprentice,” in which she went head to head with Joan Rivers. However, this show didn’t make her a famous celebrity because Annie Duke is the most famous women poker player in the world. Brother of Howard Lederer, Annie Duke can be seen on the World Series of Poker and in 2004; she won her first WSOP bracelet. Ms. Duke is highly regarded by her peers, and in the same year she won the WSOP bracelet, she also won the ESPN invitational WSOP Tournament of Champions. In fact, it is recorded that the $2 million dollar prize was the highest ever paid to a woman poker player at that time.
You may know Jennifer Tilly from her extraordinary role in “Agnes of God,” but today, she can be seen at the World Series of Poker events broadcast on cable TV. Miss Tilly is probably the most recognized of among famous celebrity gamblers. In 2005, she won the World Series of Poker playing No Limit Texas Holdem. She not only snagged the WSOP bracelet in June, but went on to win the World Poker Tour Ladies Invitational Tournament in September of the same year. Moreover, she is the first celebrity to win the WSOP bracelet!
As “Spiderman,” Toby Maguire’s character was a box office hit, but as a famous celebrity gambler, Mr. Maguire can hold his own. In 2007, Toby Maguire didn’t make it to the main event, but professional poker players agree that he is the one to watch. In fact, he does have the best record for playing poker tournaments among non-professional poker players. Moreover, he did win the Phil Helmuth Invitational, and won the Hollywood Park Casino tournament in 2004 as well. Keep an eye out for Maguire as his “web” is growing in leaps and bounds!
Known for his role in “Good Will Hunting,” Ben Affleck is a trained poker player. You may be surprised to learn that his current trainer is none other than Annie Duke! Having won his first tournament in 2004, Ben Affleck takes gambling very seriously. IN addition, he cashed in over $300,000 in the WPT championship in 2005. Married to Jennifer Garner, star of the TV show “Alias,” Ben has become well known for his keen poker instincts. Last year, Affleck won a charity poker tournament sponsored by the Poker Players Alliance.