Actor and director Ben Affleck was caught counting cards at the Hard Rock Casino in Las Vegas Monday night and was banned from playing blackjack a source told TMZ..
Affleck, 41, and wife Jennifer Garner were in Sin City for a romantic getaway before Affleck starts filming “Batman” in Los Angeles and Detroit.
The source said Affleck was barred from playing shortly after 10 p.m. “due to moving his money with the count.” He was allegedly using “perfect basic,” which is a common term for introductory card counting.
Casino management ordered a car to take Affleck and Garner back to their hotel.
The New York Daily News reported the source as saying “The Hotel was very nice to him.”
Card counting is not allowed by casinos because it gives a player a statistical edge over what cards are left to be dealt. If a player can keep track of the cards that have been seen, the player can establish a “count” to raise their bet if it is a “plus” count or lower the bet if it is a “minus” count.
Counting cards is not illegal, but since casinos are private property they can ask anyone to leave. Casinos who realize someone is counting cards share that information with other casinos.
Affleck was not banned from playing other games at the Hard Rock, just blackjack.
Affleck is no stranger to high stakes gambling. In 2001 he won $800,000 playing blackjack at the Hard Rock in Vegas, giving $150,000 in tips to dealers and waitresses in the high rollers’ Peacock lounge.
He also is a very good poker player, having won the 2004 California state poker championship at the Commerce Casino, beating 89 others, most seasoned professionals.
When the tournament came down to the last few hands, Affleck told pro Stan Goldstein “I like it that you are showing respect. I was afraid you thought you could just take it from me.” Goldstein replied “You’ve got respect.”
Card counting has been portrayed in movies such as “Rain Man” and “21,” which was based on the story of the MIT blackjack team and the basis of the 2003 Ben Mezrich book “Bringing Down the House.”
Affleck starred in the 2013 movie “Runner Runner” about cheating at online poker, and the 2000 casino theft movie “Reindeer Games.”
Affleck has won two Academy awards, directing the 2012 movie “Argo” which won best picture, and best writing, screenplay for the 1997 movie “Good Will Hunting” starring in the film with childhood friend Matt Damon.
[Image via darkknightnews.com]