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THR Deals Into Hollywood’s High-Stakes Poker Game Scene

“Competition, power and ego.” That’s the mix Hollywood Reporter writers Daniel Miller and Kim Masters suggest is at the center of Hollywood’s Texas hold ‘em no-limit private poker tables. A familiar Tinseltown cocktail, to be sure.

Perched at the very top of the scene’s four-suit totem pole is Spider-Man himself, Tobey Maguire. His is one of two celebrity names being actively floated around within some nasty litigation pertaining to Ponzi poker winnings, along with that of Nick Cassavetes. FishbowlLA’s favorite portion of the article is a truncated passage that hints at a world of accidental privilege that very few of us will ever get to witness, let alone experience:

The trouble began one day in summer 2006 when a hedge fund manager named Bradley Ruderman wandered off of exclusive Carbon Beach in Malibu and talked his way into the game…

He had been renting an oceanfront residence next door to the house of a player. One day, he walked over while a game was under way and introduced himself… Perhaps Ruderman’s charm also lay in the fact that he lost, a lot.

Although the reporters could not get any of the high-stakes Hollywood celebrity hold ‘em players to speak on the record, they did manage to tap into a helpful circuit insider. There is also confirmation, via court records, of the organizational guidance allegedly provided by Molly Bloom, younger sister of ESPN college football analyst Jeremy Bloom.

The highly entertaining feature is but the latest feather in THR‘s rapidly expanding weekly magazine cap. Kudos to Miller and Masters for what was obviously a lot of footwork.

[THR illustration by Matthew Woodson]

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