Vanessa Selbst, with an astounding $10.9 million in lifetime earnings, stands as the highest-earning female poker player. Her winnings surpass the next contender, Kristen Bicknell, by a staggering $3.6 million. Selbst, having stepped away from full-time poker half a decade ago, still holds this remarkable record. But now, she’s venturing into a new territory.
Coming this Friday, Sept. 22, Vanessa makes her first-ever appearance as an actress. She’ll grace the screen in a cameo on the drama series “Billions,” a creation of Brian Koppelman, David Levien, and Andrew Ross Sorkin. If Koppelman and Levien sound familiar, they’re the duo behind the renowned poker film “Rounders,” which marked its 25th anniversary recently.
“Billions,” a favorite series starring Paul Giamatti and Damian Lewis, is wrapping up its seventh and final season. This isn’t the series’ first encounter with the poker world. Phil Hellmuth, the Poker Hall of Fame inductee and holder of the most WSOP bracelets, made an appearance in its second season.
One particularly memorable “Billions” plot revolved around a charity poker tournament. The character Bobby ‘Axe’ Axelrod, played by Lewis, recruits a newbie for his team. Tyler Mason, portrayed by Asia Kate Dillon, emerges as the tournament winner after a challenging call. This win mirrors the legendary 1992 WSOP main event hand by Stu Ungar.
It’s no secret that renowned poker players frequently appear in mainstream media. Besides Hellmuth, other notable mentions include Johnny Chan in “Rounders” and Daniel Negreanu in “X-Men Origins: Wolverine.”
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