How Cinema Influenced the Gambling Industry

How Cinema Influenced the Gambling Industry

Movies are still the number one entertainment for most people around the world. Watching movies transports us to an imaginary world and we can forget our problems or simply enjoy something out of the ordinary. Cinema is one of the most popular art forms today and it has a huge impact on our lives. Movies and series are innovative and they often depict worlds that have never been shown before. Casino scenes have been popping up in movies every once in a while over the last 30 years and they still seem to give that certain edge to the films. 

In this article, we are discussing how cinema influenced the gambling industry in the last decades with a Portuguese iGaming expert, Martim Nabeiro. 

Where Bad Guys are the Good Guys

While typically, in movies and series the good characters only have good characteristics, sometimes it is the opposite. Think about Sons of Anarchy, where the arm-dealer, smoker, and heavy drinker bikers are the “heroes” of the series.  Casinos are often depicted in movies as dodgy places and gambling as a bad habit and yet we sympathize with the main characters and we cheer for them to win at the roulette or blackjack table. 

If you haven’t seen it yet, check out the movie The Gambler. Here the main character is a compulsive gambler who gets into all sorts of trouble playing blackjack in illegal casinos. The lesson from this movie would be not to gamble, however, in the end, he of course wins everything back and walks away as a debt-free man. 

Online casinos have also been described as dishonest establishments. However, in reality, if you choose a licensed casino such as the ones listed on casino portugal you have nothing to be afraid of. The casinos listed on this site all accept players from Portugal and are licensed in reputable gaming jurisdictions. 

Unlike the online casino depicted in the movie Runner Runner. In this 2013 film that stars Ben Affleck and Justin Timberlake, you can follow the events of a graduate student who lost his tuition fee during one night of playing poker at a dodgy Costa Rican run an online casino. 

We all Want a Bit of Glamour

Very often in a movie gambling is something glamorous and extraordinary. Men may be envious of James Bond’s good looks in a black-tie outfit and want to impress the ladies by being just like him in an elegant outfit on the casino floor. Ladies can think of all the perfect actresses in their perfect cocktail dresses we have seen on the screen: Sharon Stone in Casino, Demi Moore in Indecent Proposal, or Catherine Zeta-Jones in Ocean’s Twelve. 

Movies make us believe that gambling is something for the rich and famous and if you spend your evening at the casino fun is guaranteed. While most people will never set foot in a brick-and-mortar casino in their lives they believe that the experience cannot compare to anything.

Movie Themes in Casinos

Finally, let’s look at the direct effect cinema has on gambling. When you walk into a physical casino you will find hundreds of slot machines and online casinos often have thousands of them. The old fruit theme doesn’t excite many punters anymore and slot game producers have come up with many new themes. You will find several slot games based on popular series or movies so instead of looking at cherries and number 7s, you can look at your favorite actor’s face. Some of the most popular movie-themed slot games are:

  • Terminator 2 – Microgaming
  • Nightmare on Elm Street – 888 Gaming
  • Narcos – NetEnt
  • Batman Begins – Playtech
  • Jurassic Park – Microgaming
  • Vikings – NetEnt
  • Rocky – Playtech


Cinema has had a great effect on the gambling industry in the past decades. It depicts casinos as glamorous places where people win money and have fun. Lots of slot games use popular movie themes as well. 

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