It’s normal for famous people to purchase everything from luxury cars to real estate, but there are a growing number of celebrities who would rather gamble away their earnings at casinos and poker tournaments.
Some of Hollywood’s biggest movie stars have reportedly been addicted to gambling, including Ben Affleck, Charlie Sheen, and Tobey Maguire. Placing bets is also not a just man’s pastime. There are plenty of female celebrities equally addicted to gambling such as actress Shannon Elizabeth, who is a poker pro.
A-list actor and filmmaker Ben Affleck went to rehab in 2001 for his gambling and alcohol addictions. This year, he co-stars with Justin Timberlake in the gambling themed thriller Runner, Runner.
After landing her breakout role in American Pie, Shannon Elizabeth has found a second career as a poker player. Her passion for poker has fueled rumors that she’s running a gambling ring from her own home!
During her 2006 divorce filing, Charlie Sheen’s ex-wife Denise Richards stated the actor was spending about $20,000 a week on sports betting.
In 2011, the Spider-Man star was sued for participating in a multi-million dollar illegal gambling ring.
Like Tobey Maguire and his longtime friend Ben Affleck, Matt Damon was involved in an illegal gambling ring that took place at five-star hotels and private homes.
The most renowned player in NBA history, Michael Jordan’s retirement in 1993 was rumored to have been caused by his gambling habit.
The Baywatch babe’s $250,00 poker debt to longtime friend (and Paris Hilton’s infamous sex tape partner) Rick Salomon lead to their 2007 marriage. Their union was later annulled.
Allen Iverson’s issue with gambling has caused the basketball player to be banned from casinos in Detroit and Atlantic City.
Even though he can afford it, Tiger Woods apparently gambled away $250,000 while hosting an event at the Mandalay Bay hotel and casino in Las Vegas.
Emmy Award-winning actor Ray Romano exposed that his Men of a Certain Age character Joe Tranelli’s overcoming a gambling problem was based on personal experience.
There are also times when a gambling addiction spins out of control. The range of addiction can go from a casual player to compulsive gambler, which is also known as Ludomania.
In 2011, music legend Gladys Knight revealed that she beat a nearly decade-long gambling issue and confessed to spending up to $40,000 a night playing baccarat. NBA great Charles Barkley admitted he has lost over $10 million at casinos throughout his adult life.