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Celebrity Poker Circle -- Pay Up or GET OUT!

6/26/2011 1:00 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF

Tobey Maguire's super-exclusive high-stakes celebrity poker circle was SERIOUS when it came to cash -- in fact, TMZ has learned, if you didn't pay up ... you were blackballed for life. 

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A regular player in the exclusive poker circle -- which included Leo DiCaprio, Ben Affleck, Matt Damon, Nick Cassavetes and Todd Phillips -- tells TMZ, the poker games took place every Tuesday night for nearly 2 years ... from 2005-2007. 

The circle was small -- only 8 or 9 players at a time -- and we're told, the mood was always "super serious" ... no joking, no drinking. The games would start around 10PM and go all night.

It wasn't uncommon for tempers to flare either -- we're told screaming matches happened on the regular ... and on the rare occasion, the table even got tossed over.

There was no official buy-in -- but we're told, hands often got as big as $150,000 a pot. We're told players would regularly lose $500,000 in one sitting ... no big deal.

But these guys weren't carrying briefcases of cash with them -- we're told most of the time, they played on credit ... and if someone didn't pay, that was it ... they were out of the circle forever.

Inside the room, there were dealers, massage girls, lots of security, food, and a full bar ... presumably for the spectators -- which included a list of billionaires ... and one time, the Olsen Twins.

As for who was the ultimate card shark -- we're told that was Tobey, no question.



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71 COMMENTS

No Avatar
16.

some guy    

Tobey I want that money that you illegally won from me back.

1162 days ago
17.

me    

I like how these arrogant ass celebrities tell us to donate to third world countries, which we can barely afford to do, and then they just piss away more money then i will ever be able to throw away. Screw the African kids. Let the poker players pay for their food and safety.

1162 days ago
18.

jack-55d79    

I used to play hold'em. It's a great game, and very enjoyable. Never played anywhere near those stakes but I found that once I started playing against good players it was more a game of discipline. Obviously there are huge elements of luck, and there's no such thing as perfect hole cards, just better ones (two aces versus someone's inadvertent flush being a good example). But it's also a game of skill - knowing when to fold, probability, and mathematics. I think any compulsive risk taker would lose a lot of money playing with any half decent players as soon as they worked out they're probably bluffing a lot of the time. Plus it's harsh on the back. But a million times better than a lot of gambling that amounts only to chance. I've never understood why people play those games.

1162 days ago
19.

some guy    

Sometimes when a guy uses a mutual fund as a piggy bank, he needs to blow off some steam every now and then with a high stakes poker match. It's alot of hard work.

1162 days ago
20.

J    

Hey Jax, You sound like a complete idiot. Do you even know who the Guy your referring to as Schwarzenegger is? That's Nick Cassavetes, He's an Actor/Director. He directed Movies like Alpha Dog, John Q, Blow, etc. Plus he plays in the Tourney's regularly and is a regular on the show "High Stakes Poker".

P.S. if u watched the Movie the Hangover II, he played the tattoo artist.

1162 days ago
21.

J    

BTW Jackie, You Ditsy Broad, You and 3 guys equals a FOURSOME you dirty whore. Get a Clue!

1162 days ago
22.

writenow    

I once decided to drink only water, in a wine glass during a regular poker game...and the other guys snarked me for it, one inferred I was cheating. However, since I was serious about winning even though the stakes were considerably smaller, my goal was to eliminate the competition. And drinking while playing would only eliminate me.

1162 days ago
23.

disinter    

>no joking, no drinking
>and a full bar

What bull****.

1162 days ago
24.

wasted days and wasted nights    

Somehow, you start out playing with cards and end up losing your money. Games are funny like that.

1162 days ago
25.

some guy    

Hmm seems like they lost sight of why you would play poker with friends in the first place. Did they stop at halftime for a quick orgy?

1162 days ago
26.

Superman    

Half of this is BS to sound like they didn't pay to play these poker games. You think they would have a full bar and a guest list of millionaires and billionaires, but the players didn't joke around a bit? I can understand not drinking alcohol by players when all that money is exchanging hands. But, all that organizing, professional dealers, security, food, drinks, massage women, and guests doesn't come free and likely doesn't come cheap! All you've done is allude to the fact that the unlicensed person or persons organizing these poker games was getting paid and thus was the "house" to these illegal games.

1162 days ago
27.

nachoman    

its their money they can do what they want with it.

of course $500,000 could do a huge mountain of good if given to charity and i find the whole idea of losing so much money on a card game to be distasteful and disgusting.

1162 days ago
28.

Superman    

And I hardly believe that some of these players didn't drink alcohol during these games. Somebody is trying to whitewash these games and not doing a good job at it.

1162 days ago
29.

Puckett    

Radar reports that one of the players had hookers and coke at the ready in a hotel room down the hall, and he would disappear for 30 minutes or so at a time. They ruled out the players it wasn't but didn't name him. But the only they didn't mention was Joe Francis. lol

It's total B.S. these were just serious no drinking spectator sport high stakes games. Stuff definitely got raunchy and illegal at times even if the games themselves were.

The dumbasses should have just quietly settled up with the trustee and kept things on the down low. If they can afford to high stakes gamble they can afford to just write off "winning" to these loser who paid them in stolen funds. The court is probably going to side with the trustee anyway.

lol, Wonder if Joe paid his taxes? or just lost his money?

1162 days ago
30.

Puckett    

I was wonder how the organizers were making money off of these games while keeping them legal. From what i've gathered...

The games are legal, even with a buy in it was going in the pot and not to the organizers that set the game up.

As long as the organizers aren't taking a cut, or charging an entry fee to play in the game, and the money is simply being exchanged among players it's legal.

This is the first i've heard of spectators though. Could they be getting charged to attend these high stakes games and that's how the organizers made their money?

Or is this all just BS and they were illegal games where they organizers made money directly off of the games?

There HAD to be big money being made off of these games in addition to the pot to cover all the expenses alone, so who was paying and was it legal!?

1162 days ago
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