Is Ben Affleck a Better Gambler Than Actor?

min read
A person looks at a royal flush poker hand.
BetMGM May 11, 2023, 7:18 AM

Love him or hate him, there’s no denying that Ben Affleck is one of the biggest names in showbiz. From Good Will Hunting to Argo, Batman, Jersey Girl and many more movies in between, Affleck has been gracing our screens for over four decades (and looks unlikely to stop anytime soon.)

He also just so happens to be an avid fan of in-person and online casino games. The actor is a frequent visitor to Vegas and one of the most famous celebrities who gamble.

Affleck has had some hits and misses on screen over the years. The same applies to his gambling career, where he’s been banned from a casino while also winning a spot at the World Poker Tour final tournament.

So, is Ben Affleck’s gambling better than his acting?

Is Ben Affleck a Good Actor?

Before we get into how good Affleck is at casino table games, let’s take a look at his acting career – the good and the bad.

Acting Awards

Affleck’s first role was as a child actor in At The End of The Street in 1981. He’s gone on to star in dozens of films and a couple of series since then, receiving over 150 award nominations during that time. This indicates that he does, in fact, possess quite a bit of talent, contrary to what his critics may say.

Some of the most notable awards Affleck has received as an actor and/or director are:

  • Two Academy Awards
  • Three Golden Globes
  • Two BAFTAs (British Academy of Film and Television Award)
  • One American Film Institute Award
  • Two SAG (Screen Actors Guild) Awards

The best Ben Affleck movies were undoubtedly Good Will Hunting (1997) and Argo (2012.)

Writing and Directing Success

The actor tried his hand at writing and directing to varying degrees of success too. Two of his biggest on-screen successes were films he wrote and directed. Good Will Hunting was a major success and grossed over $225 million at the box office, while Argo made just over $232 million. Both films were hits with viewers and critics and earned Affleck tons of recognition. 

Much like his acting career, though, his writing and directing have had bumps in the road, too, while a few of his movies have completely flopped. For example, the 2017 film Live by Night made a measly $22,7 million at the box office, while his 2013 film on gambling, Runner Runner, was widely criticized but made a bit more money at $62 million at the box office.

Criticism of His Acting

Of course, it’s not all sunshine and rainbows in Hollywood. Affleck has had his fair share of criticism over the years, with 12 nominations at the Golden Razzies for his performances. He has won at the industry’s most embarrassing awards three times for:

  • Worst Actor in 2003
  • Worst Screen Couple in 2003
  • Worst Screen Couple in 2016

Ben Affleck’s Gambling

Affleck is renowned for his love of in-person and online blackjack, live dealer games, poker and more. Many have wondered if Ben Affleck has a gambling problem, but this has yet to be determined.

Gambling Successes

There’s no doubt that the actor is good at several table games, such as blackjack and poker. Of course, knowing how to act the bluff in poker is a great advantage! He’s been very successful at the tables in the past, but only a few of his winnings have become public knowledge. 

One of the most famous of these was in 2000 when he won $140,000 playing 21 at the Hard Rock Casino in Las Vegas with his friend and co-star Matt Damon. On this occasion, he gave away every one of his chips as tips to the casino staff, including dealers, waitresses and door boys – you can’t doubt the actor’s generosity. A year later, he apparently won $800,000 while playing three simultaneous hands at the same casino.

Affleck has a renowned enjoyment of high-stakes poker games and in the past, he would host games at a Beverly Hills cigar bar with A-List actors like Tobey Maguire, Leonardo DiCaprio and Matt Damon. He also won the 2004 California State Poker Championship and prize money of $350,000, along with a seat in the World Poker Tour final tournament. However, he didn’t win money here.

Affleck was allegedly part of the infamous high-stakes poker games hosted by Molly Bloom, as seen in the hit film “Molly’s Game.

Gambling Failures

We’ll never know just how much this Hollywood star has lost during his gambling career, but we know that in 2014 he got himself added to a list of celebrities banned from casinos.

The incident occurred in the Hard Rock Casino in Las Vegas, his favorite gambling hangout. Security became suspicious of the success he was having at the blackjack table and decided to investigate.

Affleck admitted to card counting, which although not strictly illegal, is hugely frowned upon and seen by casinos as a type of cheating. He received a lifetime ban from the casino and has had to find another establishment in which to spend his time.

So, just as with his acting, Affleck has had some really good and really bad moments. Luckily, with a net worth of over $150 million, he doesn’t have to worry too much about the critics and can handle his losses if he plays responsibly.

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Actress Vanessa Hudgens flipping casino chips next to the text "The King of Casinos"
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Our BetMGM editors and authors are sports experts with a wealth of knowledge of the sports industry at all levels. Their coverage includes sports news, previews and predictions, fun facts, and betting.

Our BetMGM editors and authors are sports experts with a wealth of knowledge of the sports industry at all levels. Their coverage includes sports news, previews and predictions, fun facts, and betting.