Time to start getting excited. The Stars CALL For Action celebrity charity poker tournament, powered by PokerStars, is happening tomorrow. Dozens of celebrities from the entertainment and sports industries will be taking part, with poker fans playing alongside them as well. And you’ll be able to watch it all, start-to-finish.
Even better, PokerStars is donating $1 million for the prize pool, all of which will be going to charities and those who need it most.
See below for information on when the event takes place, where to watch, how it will work, who will be taking part, and what they are playing for.
Tomorrow is the big day!
- Saturday, May 9, 2 p.m. ET (11 a.m. PT / 7 p.m. BST / 8 p.m. CET)
Following a short intro, the tournament will start about five minutes after 2 p.m. ET and should last several hours.
You can watch the Stars CALL For Action tournament streamed live on any of the following platforms
The event will be hosted by James Hartigan and PokerStars Ambassador Lex Veldhuis. Celebrities playing from their homes will have their cameras on throughout the event. There will be interviews, celebrity check-ins, and interactions with fan comments during the livestream.
Stars CALL For Action is a “play money” tournament, but with real money prizes going to charities!
The tournament field will be comprised of two groups — the celebrities and poker fans. The groups will be playing separately for most of the tournament before some from each will combine at the end before they play down to a winner.
Over on the celebrity side, they will be playing a no-limit hold’em shootout format, with winners emerging from six-handed tables.
The starting stacks will be 5,000 chips with an option to rebuy for another 5,000 during the first half-hour. In other words, if a player busts during the first 30 minutes, he or she will be able to buy back in. If a player doesn’t bust during that period, the player will enjoy some bonus chips at the half-hour mark.
All of the celebrities who win their tables will advance to the final tournament.
Meanwhile on the other side the poker fans or “non-celebrities” will be playing a regular six-handed NLHE multi-table tournament down to a final six players who will then also advance to the final tournament to pay with the celebrities.
The celebrity winners of the shootout tables and the final six from the regular tournament will combine to play the final tournament, which will play as a regular multi-table tournament. All of the players will be automatically registered for this final tournament.
Final Tournament Payouts
- Every celebrity who wins their table is guaranteed $10,000 for their charity. This is displayed via the payouts in the final tournament.
- The six players from the “Regular Tournament” who make it to the Final Tournament will have at least $10,000 donated on their behalf to Care International — possibly even more depending on how they do going forward!
- Players will play down to a final table of six
- The final table of six will be able to build on their $10k donation depending on where they finish
- The winner will be able to donate $100,000 guaranteed to their charity of choice
- 2nd-6th prizes will be determined based on final entrants, with all building on the $10,000 donation they already have for making the final
Celebrities who finish runner-up at their respective shootout tables will each be entered into a Second Chance Celebrity Tournament that will begin at 4 p.m. ET (1 p.m. PT / 9 p.m. BST / 10 p.m. CET).
That event will be a regular multi-table tournament that will play down to a winner. First prize will get to direct $50,000 to his or her charity of choice out of the $500,000 being reserved for the celebrities’ charities.
As we discussed earlier this week with Hank Azaria and Andy Bellin who helped organized the event, a number of big names from both the entertainment and sports worlds have answered the Stars CALL For Action.
Some of the celebrities scheduled to play include:
- Casey Affleck (Ocean’s trilogy, The Assassination of Jesse James)
- Jason Alexander (Seinfeld)
- Hank Azaria (Friends, The Simpsons, Brockmire)
- Andy Bellin (author of Poker Nation)
- Jack Black (Tenacious D, School of Rock)
- Michael Ian Black (The State, Wet Hot American Summer)
- Eric Bogosian (Talk Radio, subUrbia)
- Macaulay Culkin (Home Alone)
- Michael Cera (Arrested Development, Molly’s Game)
- Don Cheadle (Traffic, Hotel Rwanda, Ocean’s trilogy)
- Bryan Cranston (Breaking Bad, Malcolm in the Middle)
- Brad Garrett (Everybody Loves Raymond)
- Jeff Garlin (Curb Your Enthusiasm, The Goldbergs)
- Jon Hamm (Mad Men)
- Brian Koppelman (co-screenwriter of Rounders, co-creator Billions)
- Lisa Kudrow (Friends)
- Gabriel Macht (The Spirit, Suits)
- Neymar Jr. (Brazilian footballer)
- Ed Norton (Rounders, American History X, Motherless Brooklyn)
- Aaron Paul (Breaking Bad)
- Liam Payne (One Direction)
- Kevin Pollak (The Usual Suspects, Casino, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel)
- Amy Schumer (Inside Amy Schumer, Trainwreck)
- David Schwimmer (Friends)
- Mike Tindall (English rugby player)
- Tony Yazbeck (On the Town)
Again, that’s only a partial list, as many other celebrities will be at the virtual tables as well.
As noted above, PokerStars is donating $1 million to the prize pool, all of which will be going to charity. Half of that amount — $500,000 — will be going to CARE International, the humanitarian organization that provides emergency relief and other aid those in need in over 100 countries.
Celebrities participating in the event will be playing for the other $500,000, with those who go deep and finish in the top spots winning money that will then go to the charities of their choice. (And bragging rights, of course!)
Everyone is being affected by the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, including charitable organizations at a time when they need donations the most.
So it’s a great time for an event like Stars CALL For Action. And it should be a great time as well for those taking part and for everyone watching — a fun way to get together while we’re apart, and to help several great causes.
See you there!