Phil Ivey Movie Will Be “Tale of Cunning and Revenge”

6 months ago
Phil Ivey Movie Will Be “Tale of Cunning and Revenge”
09:49
16 Mar

Phil Ivey may be one of poker’s biggest stars, but in the movie about his baccarat fracas with the Borgata, he’ll be playing second fiddle to his partner Cheung Yin “Kelly” Sun.


John Penotti, a producer on the film, gave an interview to Variety recently in which he described the film as “a truly captivating story that will feature a diverse international cast” and an “exciting, high-stakes tale of cunning and revenge.”

The movie came about after Ivey and Sun were profiled back in a 2017 Cigar Afficionado article written by Michael Kaplan. The story covered Ivey and Sun’s astonishing $10 million court battle with the Borgata in the US and similar £7.7 million battle with Crockfords in the UK.


Kaplan got his start covering poker with a 1997 profile on Stu Ungar. In a recent interview, Kaplan told USPoker that:

“It’s a big deal, I love movies and the idea of writing something that would inspire a movie is pretty exciting.”

Now his article on Ivey and Sun has been picked up by Ivanhoe Pictures – the company behind the movie version of Crazy Rich Asians – and Sharp Independent Pictures who are putting on a large scale international production for Baccarat Machine with Akwafina already cast to star.


The story will centre on how Sun used Ivey’s celebrity as leverage to get casino’s to agree to insanely specific requirements including the use of a specific brand of card which Sun knew to have a slight asymmetry on the back. This allowed Ivey and Sun to use a technique called edge sorting to gain a massive edge.

The casino’s claim this was cheating and if you don’t already know which way the court came down, I won’t be the one to spoil the movie for you. 

After all, who is gonna miss the Phil Ivey movie when it comes out?


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Jon is a freelance writer and novelist who learned to play poker after watching Rounders in year 9. He has been giving away his beer money at cards ever since. Currently he is based in Bristol where he makes sporadic donations to the occasional live tournament or drunken late night Zoom session. He ...Read more

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