LAS VEGAS (June 22, 2015) – Poker Central®, the world’s only 24/7 Poker™ TV network, today announced that celebrities Hank Azaria, Don Cheadle, Brad Garrett, Norm Macdonald and Kevin Pollak will play in the Super High Roller Celebrity Shootout. These Hollywood celebrities will compete for a $1 million prize in a poker tournament that has them facing some of poker’s most famous players: Doyle Brunson, Antonio Esfandiari, Daniel Negreanu, Phil Hellmuth, and Vanessa Selbst. The Super High Roller Celebrity Shootout will take place on June 27th and 28th at ARIA Resort & Casino in Las Vegas.
Watch on NBCSN
The Super High Roller Celebrity Shootout will air on NBCSN for three Wednesdays in a row, beginning at 9:00 PM ET on July 29th. “These Hollywood celebrities are about to face off in the hardest game of their life, for more than they’ve ever played for before, against some of the world’s best players,” said Clint Stinchcomb, CEO of Poker Central. “This exciting, high pressure poker will be riveting to watch.”
Quick Facts about the Super High Roller Celebrity Shootout
About the Celebrity Players
With four Emmys and a Screen Actors Guild Award to his name, Hank Azaria is a famous actor, comedian and producer who starred in movies such as The Birdcage, Grosse Point Blank, Godzilla, Mystery Men, America’s Sweethearts, Shattered Glass, Along Came Polly, Run Fatboy Run, Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian and The Smurfs. Although Hank had recurring roles on the TV shows Mad About You and Friends, Hank is most popular on TV for the dozens of characters that he’s brought to life in The Simpsons since its first year on TV in 1989. Hank likes to use his love of poker to raise money for others, especially for the Geffen Playhouse and Determined to Succeed, a charity that helps low income students with year-round academic and enrichment support.
Golden Globe winner and Academy Award nominee Don Cheadle is a critically acclaimed actor whose extensive movie career includes a mix of films such as Crash and Hotel Rwanda, which landed him an Academy Award nomination, and blockbusters like Boogie Nights, Ocean’s Eleven, Ocean’s Twelve and Ocean’s Thirteen, Iron Man 2 and Iron Man 3. Don began his career in television, appearing in Fame, L.A. Law, Hill Street Blues, The Golden Palace, Picket Fences, ER and TV films A Lesson Before Dying, The Rat Pack and Things Behind the Sun, before winning a Golden Globe for his role in House of Lies. After filming Hotel Rwanda, Don used his love of poker to raise money for others. He helped found Ante Up for Africa, which raised a total of $3 million to provide lifesaving assistance to help the long-suffering people of Darfur.
Brad Garrett won three Emmys and a SAG Award for his role as Robert Barone on the iconic television series Everybody Loves Raymond. Garrett’s trademark voice has been heard in over 30 animated features, including Finding Nemo, Ratatouille and Tangled. Garrett’s film credits Include David Chase’s Not Fade Away, Music And Lyrics, Suicide Kings and Sweet And Lowdown. Garrett’s 30-year stand-up career includes appearances on The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson and opening for Frank Sinatra and Sammy Davis, Jr. in the 80s in Las Vegas. Brad has recently opened his own comedy club at the MGM Grand, performing to sold-out audiences, and his autobiography When The Balls Drop was just released last month. Brad, too, uses poker to raise funds for his nonprofit, the Maximum Hope Foundation, which helps children with life-limiting illnesses. Brad is hosting his next poker tournament for Maximum Hope Foundation on September 19th in Las Vegas.
Named one of the 100 Greatest Stand-ups of All Time by Comedy Central, Norm Macdonald is a TV and movie actor who’s starred in movies like Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo, Deuce Bigalow: European Gigolo, The Animal, Dr. Dolittle, Dr. Dolittle 2 and Dr. Dolittle 3. On TV, Norm is best known for his five seasons on Saturday Night Live, which included anchoring Weekend Update for three years. Early in his career, he wrote for the sitcom Roseanne and made appearances on The Drew Carey Show and News Radio. He also starred in his own show The Norm Show from 1999 to 2001. He is a noted talk show guest of both David Letterman and Conan O’Brien. Norm is a lifelong fan of poker, teaching himself card games while growing up in Quebec. Norm hosted a cash game poker television program called High Stakes Poker in 2011 and usually follows up a stand-up comedy routine in Las Vegas with a night at the tables.
Kevin Pollak is a TV and movie star known for his roles in blockbuster films like A Few Good Men, Grumpy Old Men, Grumpier Old Men, The Usual Suspects, Casino, The Whole Nine Yards, and The Whole Ten Yards. Kevin has appeared in more than 60 films and TV shows like Vamped Out and Entourage. Kevin also has his own internet talk show called Kevin Pollak’s Chat Show, which features interviews with fellow actors like Dana Carvey, Matthew Perry and Jon Hamm. In addition to his acting skills, Kevin is known for his stand-up comedy, including his famous impersonations of actors like William Shatner, Alan Arkin, Christopher Walken, Walter Matthau and Robert De Niro. An avid poker player, Kevin likes to host games at his home with other Hollywood celebrities and also hosted a poker TV show, Celebrity Poker Showdown. He made it to 134th in the 2012 WSOP, walking away with $52,718.
About the Professional Players
At age 81, Doyle Bronson has been playing professional poker for more than 50 years. He virtually invented the phenomenon that is Texas Hold´em. He reshaped the image of poker as a game for cowboys to a game for world leaders and top executives. A winner of 10 World Series of Poker bracelets, including the two back-to-back world championships, Doyle was the leader of the Texas Rounders, a group of men who, in the words of The History Channel, “cleaned Texas dry” playing high-stakes poker in the 1950s and ´60s. His play became so famous that he became one of Las Vegas’s earliest tourist attractions: audiences would gather in awe to watch him play.
Antonio “The Magician” Esfandiari is known for his rock star lifestyle, humor, and giving nature, as well as his amazing skill at the table. Best known for winning the largest cash prize in the history of poker – $18,346,673 – Antonio has $26 million in lifetime poker winnings to his name, and is been ranked as one of the biggest tournament winners in all of poker. A former magician turned poker player, Antonio has won 2 WPT championships and 3 WSOP bracelets and is one of the elite hat trick players – players who have won $1 million+ in 3 or more tournaments, including the 2013 WSOP and the WPT in 2010 and 2004. Calm and cheerful at the table, Antonio maintains a quirky, self-deprecating sense of humor, a love of family, and a love of helping others that has catapulted him from popular to beloved.
Phil Hellmuth, Jr.
$18,282,014 in lifetime poker winnings. 300 cashes. 200 final tables. #2 in the All Time Money List. A record 14 WSOP bracelets. A record 53 WSOP final tables. The all-time WSOP leader in cashes. Poker Hall of Fame inductee in 2007. The youngest WSOP Main Event winner in history when he won in 1989. The only player to ever win the WSOP Main Event in Vegas and also in Europe. In a poker career that spans three decades, the unstoppable king of poker Phil Hellmuth Jr. is world famous for his great poker skills and big personality. Nicknamed “Poker Brat” for his tableside temper tantrums, Phil is the best live tournament poker player of all time and one the most well-known, with his fame reaching well beyond those who follow poker. A mix of prankster and businessman, Phil has turned a poker playing into a media career that includes a best-selling book, software, online poker games and apps, his own clothing line, and multiple television and movie offers.
Ranked #1 on the World’s All-Time Money List and #1 in popularity, Daniel Negreanu is the largest tournament winner in the history of poker. With a professional poker career spanning 20 years and nearly $30 million in winnings, the iconic Negreanu is so popular that his name is synonymous with poker itself. With 6 million-dollar cashes to his name, including an $8 million score in the 2014 One Drop, Daniel’s fun-loving personality and easy-going attitude make him a fan favorite. Daniel’s incredibly successful play, combined with his outspoken nature and love of the game, have also made him one of the leading ambassadors of the poker world.
Vanessa Selbst is the highest earning female poker player of all time, with over $10.5 million in total winnings. Vanessa has been playing poker for over 10 years, starting online before moving to tournament play. As the only woman to win three bracelets in open WSOP events, Vanessa’s best year was 2010, when she won almost $3M in 2010, earning her 6th place on the 2010 money list. When not playing poker, Vanessa works tirelessly, using her degree from Yale Law School, to fight for social justice through her foundation Venture Justice.
About Poker Central®
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