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There are a number of actresses that love the sport of poker, but if you had to place your money on one of them…nine times out of ten, you’re going to bet on the multi-talented Jennifer Tilly.

Her acting career started her on the poker road; researching a role for Let It Ride (1989) sparked Tilly’s gambling curiosity, and Tilly became involved in a regular home game with friends. From there, her poker career (as well as her acting career) only went on to bigger and bigger roles.

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Tilly started competing in tournaments in 2003, encouraged Phil “The Unabomber” Laak, who became her boyfriend after meeting her at a WPT Invitational tournament. She credits Laak with her poker skills, both by directly teaching her and, as she said, “through osmosis.” For better or worse, she became forever known as “The Unabombshell”.

In 2005, Tilly won a World Series of Poker bracelet and $158,625 in the $1,000 Ladies’ No-Limit Texas Hold’em event (outlasting 600 other players).

Later in the same year, she continued her streak by winning the third World Poker Tour Ladies Invitational Tournament, beating such poker luminaries as Isabelle “No Mercy” Mercier (WPT Season 2 Ladies Night champion), Cecelia Mortensen (tournament player and wife of 2001 WSOP champion Carlos Mortensen), and Aidiliy Elviro (fianc´┐Że of Michael “The Grinder” Mizrachi).

You may also have seen her competing in the Poker Royale series on the Game Show Network (GSN), the third season of Poker Superstars Invitational on Fox Sports News (FSN), and the 2006 season of Celebrity Poker Showdown on Bravo.

Having taken to the game like a fish to water, Tilly became a regular on the poker circuit and she started writing a column for Bluff Magazine. Although she no longer pens the column, Tilly can occasionally be found dragging a pot in Hollywood home games or tournaments that are near the places where she is acting.


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