Dallas (Underground) Poker on Film?

by , May 14, 2008 | 5:00 pm

There’s a legitimate New York film-making outfit working on a documentary about the history of poker … and next week they’ll be in Dallas. Naturally, because it has such a relevant role, they want to talk about the Dallas underground — and they’re asking me for contact info for people to talk to, games to see, etc.

I’ve talked with a lot of you before about doing something similar with local news crews — but perhaps not shockingly, ever since the first newscaster to sneak a hidden camera into the Dallas underground ended up getting engaged to the (already married) Chief of Dallas police around the same time her station got a sweeps-week exclusive showing SWAT teams busting up three games simultaneously, most of the “good guys” in the Dallas poker scene have been a little shy about opening their doors to the media … even with assurances that no one would give up any identifying info.

(Ahh, remember the good-ole-days when Stagecoach used to openly run its ballin’ website and pay little-ole poker websites for ads the Observer couldn’t run?)

Anyhow, so this outfit, 4th Row Films, is offering the same guarantees that they will protect identities and locations. Personally I think it would be a shame for this part of poker not to be seen. But I respect the fact people who run these games generally do so to support their gambling addictions families … so I’m not giving out any phone numbers or email addresses without any special OKs. I have, however, suggested they simply drive around to area strip malls looking for the telltale white, wireless doorbells — but that doesn’t seem to be giving them confidence as they fly their people and equipment to town. So if you happen to run a game in Dallas and would like your room to live on long after you die/get arrested and have to plea bargain down your misdemeanor … send me an email and I’ll be happy to put you in touch with the right people.

3 Comments to “Dallas (Underground) Poker on Film?”

  1. donkey

    So, how much are we talking about here, Dan? Tell them you got the best guy, but it will cost them a buy-in to the Main Event. They ain’t got no show without my angles on the scene.

  2. zach

    sounds like a bad idea, good thing I’m leaving this scene for the summer.

  3. DanM

    zach, i don’t see anything to lose. it’s not like the cops don’t know where the different rooms are. except for the one room that got robbed — that one the cops didn’t know about until the operators had to call them. and we all know the 5-0 and the thugs alike know where the biggest game in town currently is … it’s just logistically a pain in the butt for them to deal with, and in general the room peeps are fine neighbors so no one complains.

    there’s no downside to letting people in looking to tell the truth (with necessary protective precautions). the downside comes in a false sense of security that the underground is totally hidden.

    Donkey, the journalist in me forgot to try and profit from the dissemination of facts. But not a bad idea. And you probably would be a pretty good person to talk to … but don’t overvalue your hand. They could easily talk about you using just your mugshot(s).

    With all this said, I understand if you all are pussies.