Stu Ungar captures attention of poker fans in movie


Dormant account
Oct 15, 2004
New York, man :)
The legendary poker player Stu Ungar, who used to shine in poker tournaments, now will appear in a movie. New Line Home Entertainment announced the date of release for their "High Roller: The Stu Ungar story" on DVD. According to, the film about famous poker guru is set for release on March 15th.

The leading role of celebrity gambler is played by Michael Imperioli. The film, directed by A.W.Vidmar, also stars Pat Morita of Karate Kid and Happy Days fame, as well as Michael Nouri, and Renee Faia.

The plot of the movie is based on the real life story of Ungar, who is considered the greatest No Limit Hold 'Em player ever. Ungar won the first two WSOP main events he entered, in 1980, and 1981. From time to time Ungar was reported to enter major buy in tournaments (once it was 30 tournaments), and to win one-third of them.

On the photo you can see Stu Ungar, right, who admires his $1 million World Series of Poker cash first prize in Las Vegas.
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The 1997 WSOP tournament unveiled Ungar who hadn't been in the frame for over 7 years. That time he had been playing just in small games in Las Vegas. They say that Ungar even didn't have the money to enter the WSOP Championship, but an hour before play an anonymous benefactor produced the $10,000 entry.

Stu Ungar, who was born in New York City, became a professional gambler at the age of 14. His father, who died when Stu was 13 year old, was a bookmaker and bar operator. The gambling way of life was likely to be inherited from his forefather. Thus, Las Vegas became an essential part of Stu, who won his first gin rummy tournament in a Catskill Mountain Resort while vacationing with his parents at the age of 10.

There were victories in different games ranging from Gin games to blackjack. But Stu's success was undermined with his addiction to sports and track betting and many other similar activities. There was a time when he was under the threat of death because of drug addiction. Stu returned to the spotlight in 1997 winning his third WSOP main event title. However, Ungar didnt manage to give up his bad habits for ever and returned to his ruining way of life. He died in 1998 when he was just 42.

The movie full of absorbing details regarding Stus life can be seen even earlier than in March. The Starz cable network will premier High Roller: The Stu Ungar story on January 30th. However, the DVD-watchers will have some other advantages like extra features, including running commentary from Imperioli and Hollywood home game legend Vince Van Patten.

Finally its coming on dvd. I have been waiting this for some time. I have heard its a great film.

"including running commentary from Imperioli and Hollywood home game legend Vince Van Patten."

Vince is not an advantage.. more like a disadvantage, but it is probably optional. :)
The dear Vince also commentates WPT, which I have on DVD.

And I'm not really a fan of his way to comment - too "sensationalistic". Still, I'll admit I have seen and heard worse.

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