Wealthy celebrities playing underground poker games for enormous sums of money leading to accusations of fraud and embezzlement — it sounds like the plot of about forty-seven different movies. Unfortunately for Tobey Maguire, it’s all too real.
The actor was recently sued by Bradley Ruderman, a man currently serving jail time for his part in a Ponzi scheme that resulted in investors being swindled out of $50 million. (This guy sounds really reliable.) Ruderman is attempting to recover over $4 million that he lost to Maguire and the 21 other people named in the lawsuit (including “The Notebook” director Nick Cassavettes and Paris Hilton’s sex tape partner Rick Salomon).
TMZ reports now that Maguire categorically denies that the games were illegal. He has filed legal documents, admitting that he was invited to play a few poker games — but he says that the games were casual, not “controlled,” and thus didn’t require a gambling license.
He also denies Ruderman’s assertion that the games are part of a ring with a “regular roster of players consisting of wealthy celebrities, entrepreneurs, attorneys and businessmen.” (Ruderman also named Maguire’s BFF Leonardo DiCaprio as a regular player, as well as another pair of celeb bromancers, Matt Damon and Ben Affleck.)
Maguire and DiCaprio are reportedly prepping to begin filming Baz Luhrmann’s “The Great Gatsby.”