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Poker Stories Podcast with Jennifer Tilly

by Julio Rodriguez |  Published: Aug 14, 2019

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Poker Stories is a long-form audio podcast series that features casual interviews with some of the game’s best players and personalities. Each episode highlights a well-known member of the poker world and dives deep into their favorite tales both on and off the felt.

To listen, visit www.cardplayer.com/poker-podcasts or download it directly to your device from any number of mobile apps, such as Apple Podcasts, Stitcher, Google Play, or Spotify. Catch up on past episodes featuring notables such as Doyle Brunson, Daniel Negreanu, Justin Bonomo, Nick Schulman, Barry Greenstein, Michael Mizrachi, Bryn Kenney, Mike Sexton, Brian Rast, Chris Moneymaker, Maria Ho, Joe Cada, Freddy Deeb, and many more.

Age: 60
Hometown: Los Angeles, California
Live Tournament Earnings: $1 Million

Top Live Tournament Scores

June 2005 WSOP $1,000 Ladies Event 1st $158,625
July 2010 Bellagio Cup $5,000 NLHE 1st $124,455
March 2013 PartyPoker Premier League 7th $98,000
Feb. 2008 WPT LA Poker Classic 12th $61,610
Sept. 2006 WPT Borgata Poker Open 15th $52,380

Jennifer Tilly is an Academy Award-nominated actress who has starred in films such as Bullets Over Broadway, Bound, Liar Liar, Monsters Inc., St. Ralph, The Fabulous Baker Boys, and the Chucky series. But she also happens to be an avid poker player, and a World Series of Poker bracelet winner.

Tilly, who is in a relationship with poker pro Phil Laak, won the ladies event at the 2005 WSOP, picking up the title and the $158,625 first-place prize. She also has a win at the 2010 Bellagio Cup, taking down a $5,000 no-limit hold’em event for $124,455. Poker fans will recognize Tilly from her many appearances on shows such as the Celebrity Poker Showdown, Poker Royale, Poker Night In America, The National Heads Up Poker Championship, The Poker Superstars Invitational, and Poker After Dark.

Highlights from this interview include the brilliant mumblings of Norm MacDonald, what Wikipedia got wrong, Lou Diamond Phillips’ Monday night poker game, intruding on guy’s night, playing the teamsters for their per diem, Tilly chili, trying to friend zone Phil Laak, bad driving on a bad first date, Joan Allen’s bedroom hair, taking $20,000 to a $1-$2 home game with Ben Affleck, getting ‘passed a check,’ being a D-JEN, virtual bracelets and real bracelets, her father’s hidden poker life, seeing ghosts, using her voice to get rid of telemarketers, comedy math with Dave Foley, winning a $260,000 home game pot, passing on a piece of Antonio, the poker problems with Molly’s Game, James Bond’s terrible betting style, and a joke from Charles Durning.

The Transcript Highlights

Tilly Recalls The Biggest Home Game Pot Of Her Career

Jennifer Tilly: The biggest pot I ever won in a home game was $267,000. And after that, I was really looking for an excuse to leave.

JR: That’s a big home game.

JT: Then everyone starts kicking it up. They say, ‘Look at fucking Jennifer with half a million on the table.” So, everyone is loading up, they are doing the straddles, because they feel like they can take it back from me.

Luckily one of the guys had to go, and it was the guy I won the pot off of. He had to leave, and [it let me off the hook] because I took all that money off of him and I had to give him a chance to win it back. So about 15 minutes after he left, I left.

JR: Do you remember the details of the hand?

JT: It was sort of a cooler. But it wasn’t really. There was a guy…

JR: You can’t disclose…

JT: I don’t want to say who they were.

JR: Clearly an A-lister, though.

JT: There’s a lot of people in that game that are A-listers. There was a guy who bought in for $20,000… he didn’t really play. Just fold, fold, fold, fold. [Tilly then spends a minute trying to recall the details of the hand.]

Okay… let’s start this story again. (laughing) He didn’t raise enough to make either of us fold. The [other] guy flatted, and I flatted too. The flop comes king high or whatever, with a flush draw. I have the nut flush draw. Now the tight guy with the $20k goes all in. He obviously has aces, or a big overpair. It might not have come king high, (laughing) I’m terrible with hand histories.

I wanted to be heads-up with that guy, who basically made it $10k preflop and $10k post-flop. I didn’t want the other guy in, so I did a big reraise.

JR: You were trying to isolate.

JT: I was trying to isolate. So all of a sudden he drops a chip by accident, and says, ‘That’s a sign,’ as he calls my ginormous reraise. Now I’m sick, because all I have is a flush draw. But then the turn was the flush, and the guy moves in, quick as a flash. Obviously, I called… and he had a [lower] flush. ♠