Poker King Can Be Bigger Than Rounders
One of the stars of the Hollywood film Rounders, legendary ten-time World Series Of Poker bracelet winner Johnny Chan, has stated that a new Chinese-language movie provisionally entitled Poker King has the potential to be much bigger than the 1998 hit.
The professional poker player is hoping for a role in the film, which is to be filmed during next week's Asian Poker Tour (APT) Macau Festival at the Galaxy StarWorld Hotel And Casino in Macau.
"Poker King has the potential to be much, much bigger than Rounders ever was," said Chan.
"Say there are over one billion Chinese speaking people in the world and compare this to the US and its 300 million people and you can see that this could be huge. Rounders gave poker a new lease of life in the western world and this could kick start a new poker boom in Asia.
The APT Macau Festival will take place from August 12 to 23 and its main event will feature a buy-in set at $4,300. It will also see the largest range of side events ever seen in Asia with high-limit games and sit-and-go tables running throughout the twelve days.
Poker King is set to star some of the biggest names in Chinese cinema including Louis Koo, Sean Lau Ching-Wan, Stephy Tang, Cherrie In and Josie Ho with a cinema release scheduled for later this year.
"I had a fantastic time filming Rounders back in the 90s," said Chan.
"A big part of my involvement was behind the scenes where I helped teach Matt Damon, Edward Norton and John Malkovich how to play poker. I also played myself in the film and to this day it gives me recognition in the mainstream outside of poker circles. The film had a huge impact on poker and gave it a new lease of life. In fact, I was recently talking to Chris Moneymaker who is credited by many as being a catalyst for the poker boom in the west and he said that without the influence of Rounders he wouldn't have even have tried to qualify for the World Series of Poker main event that he won. People got turned on by it and I can see this happening with Poker King in the Chinese-language world."