Streaming poker tournaments is becoming a trend in the charity world. After Poker Central’s Keep the Lights On campaign and Ben Affleck’s online poker tournament in support of Feed America, PokerStars is now hosting its own event to support individuals and families affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Hosted by actor Hank Azaria and Poker Nation author Andy Bellin, the Stars “Call For Action” will raise money for a number of good causes, including CARE International. For every celebrity that enters, PokerStars will donate $10,000 to the organization, a humanitarian agency that provides disaster relief to areas in crisis. All-in-all, the prize pool will total $1 million.
Table of Contents
There will be two groups of celebrities that will play separately. For every celebrity that plays, PokerStars will select one random poker fan to join, as well.
Half of the prize pool will be donated to CARE International. The other half will be decided by the celebrities who finish highest in the tournament. They will get to decide which charities will receive their portion of the prize money.
Any celebrities who are knocked out of the tournament early will be competing in a side event. The winner of this event will then decide where 10% of the total will be donated.
Which Celebrities Will Be Playing?
We’ll be seeing some of the biggest stars in Hollywood taking part in the PokerStars Call For Action poker tournament. Organizers Andy Bellin and Hank Azaria will be playing, along with some very talented comedians and actors like:
- Jason Alexander
- Michael Cera
- Don Cheadle
- Bryan Cranston
- Brad Garrett
- Brian Koppleman
- Edward Norton
- Amy Schumer
- David Schwimmer
This is just an initial list of runners. Several more will be announced within the next couple of days before the event.
Many of the participants actually play in in a weekly game with Bellin and Azaria. Cera and Schwimmer regularly join in the star-studded home game. So, now, we’ll be able to get an inside look at how some of Hollywood’s poker aficionados interact on the felt.
“If There Was Ever A Time to Design an Online Charity Poker Tournament, This Is It”
Bellin’s and Azaria’s idea for the event goes back a long way. The two had been planning to host a poker charity event in New York, “the old-fashioned kind where people actually sat around a table and touched cards”. The city’s shut down threw a wrench in those plans, but Azaria and Bellin decided to get creative and host the event online.
Originally, the poker tournament was meant to raise for the D.R.E.A.M. Foundation, where Azaria worked at one point. So, it was decided that they would raise money to help those affected by coronavirus.
“We realized right now it doesn’t really make sense to do an event like that except for COVID relief. PokerStars was generous enough to offer this tremendous deal of putting it up to a million dollars. It’s made us have to scramble to find a lot of celebrities to fill it, but we’re getting a great response”
How to Watch
The PokerStars Call for Action celebrity poker tournament will take place on Saturday, May 9 at 14:00 ET. You can tune in on PokerStars’ Twitch Channel.