Saturday, July 21, 2012

Sarah De Bono opens Kiehl’s store in Chatswood, Sydney, Australia

Sarah De Bono opens Kiehl’s apothecary health and beauty store in Chatswood, Sydney, Australia...


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Saturday the 21st of July reality TV superstar Sarah De Bono dazzled the northshore shopping mecca of Chatswood Chase with the official ribbon cutting and opening of the Kiehl's boutique.

Kiehl's since 1851 is a quintessential New York label with an apothecary line up that will satisfy ant skin care need.


De Bono from 'The Voice' fame, whose album is currently number 9 in the iTunes charts, cut the ribbon at midday.

Customers received 10 per cent off their purchases and Kiehl's is donating 10 per cent of sales to De Bono's chosen charity, Musicians Making a Difference.

It is the New York-based skincare brand's first Sydney store.

In case you didn't know Kiehl’s was founded as an apothecary in New York’s East Village neighborhood over 160 years ago, and they have been expanding the luxury franchise outlets around Australia over the past number of years.

Ingredients are the single most important component their their products and they have always proudly displayed theirs.

Ingredients are not chosen on their aesthetic merit – only formulas with ingredients that are truly beneficial to the skin are selected. They select many naturally derived ingredients for use in the formulations, and they are committed to utilizing only the most gentle and efficacious formulas for maximum benefit and results.

Kiehl's is a very community and philanthropic minded company. Giving is the embodiment of "The Mission of Kiehl’s". Written over 30 years ago by Kiehl’s founding family, their Mission clearly stated their belief in the importance of giving back to the communities in which they serve customers every day.


For the Holiday season 2010, in stores in Australia only, Kiehl’s was pleased to announce a collaboration with one of the foremost recognized Australian iconic artists, Ken Done who is using his creative genius to help children in need around the world. With the shared vision to help to create safer, stronger local communities for children, the Kiehl’s and DONE partnership raised awareness and funds through the sale of a Limited Edition Crème de Corps Holiday Collection, comprised of a three-product offering. Each product in the collection featured the artwork of ‘Postcard June’ (2007, acrylic on canvas, 91 x 122cm). 100% of Kiehl’s net profits from the sale of each product in Australia were donated to UNICEF, the United Nations Children's Fund, the world’s leading advocate for children.

In Australia Kiehl’s continue to partner with leading charity, Red Kite. Every month they collect money to support children in need and organize shop for a cause events.

Today's special appearance has become a topic of conversation in the Australian beauty industry.

Kiehl's continues to innovate in an ultra impressive fashion - be it with products, services, or out of the box media and marketing campaigns.


Kiehl's makes a grand entrance at Chatswood Chase Sydney!

Since 1851, Kiehl’s has had a devoted group of patrons (models and moguls among them) flocking to their original Third Ave apothecary for medicinal and herbal tonics. Their herbal-based apothecary skincare formulas and tell-it-like-it-is packaging have garnered the devotion of generations of no-fuss types world-wide who like to keep their lives simple.

Founded by John Kiehl, the store began as a homeopathic pharmacy. Its unique background represents a blend of cosmetic, pharmaceutical, herbal and medicinal knowledge and experience acquired through the family’s generations. All products are made by hand using the finest ingredients available (and Kiehl's "secret" formulations).


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Maxim magazine celebrates 1st birthday at The Star, Sydney, Australia - 21st July 2012

Marquee Sydney helps Maxim celebrate first birthday...


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Last night at The Star popular men's magazine, Maxim Australia, celebrated its first birthday.

If you didn't know already, Maxim is a lad's mag, and this issue is blessed with Australian sports model, Lauryn Eagle. Did we mention Lauren is a boxer, kick boxer, water skier and more! She's also one of Australia's most popular sports models these days.

The magazine and is sponsors, advertisers, models and everyone else associated with it should be happy with tonight's turn out, and any print magazine out of Australia that is still in business does have something to celebrate.

Joining Lauryn were other names and celebs including Brittany Bloomer, Grant Dwyer, Rochelle Fox, Nacho Pop, Brittany and Anthony Cairns, Annalise Braakensiek and new reality TV star (and model), Lara Bingle.

Well done to everyone involved in tonight's birthday success.

Wrap Up...

The Star's tag line is 'There will be stories', and its a sure bet Star will keep living up to that if tonight was any indication. A casino matched with Maxim Australia, a media pack, models and more - that's going to make news.


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Friday, July 20, 2012

Gaming, Entertainment, Hollywood and Celebrity News

Gaming, Entertainment, Hollywood and Celebrity News: Sydney casino, Spider-Man movie, movie ratings, The Wolverine, Bwin.Party Digital Entertainment, James Bond 007 in Skyfall, Highest paid actors includes "The Rock" and more...


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Australia's Lend Lease: development could host small-scale casino...

A planned $6 billion development on Sydney Harbour does not have space for a large casino but could cater for smaller-scale VIP gaming, developer Lend Lease said on Monday, which would suit a proposal put forward by billionaire James Packer.

Packer outlined a plan for an international hotel and casino at Barangaroo, on Sydney's waterfront, after his company Crown Ltd doubled its stake in its main rival, Echo Entertainment, which owns Sydney's sole casino.

Crown wants to raise its stake in Echo to 25 percent from 10 percent, as part of its plans to lobby for a second Sydney casino licence to attract more Asian high-rollers.

The developer of the site, Lend Lease, said on Monday it could focus more on plans for the hotel after announcing it has secured A$2 billion ($2.04 billion) funding for the first two commercial towers at its flagship project, including A$1 billion committed by Canada Pension Plan Investment Board.

Lend Lease chief executive Steve McCann said the site did not have the capacity for a mass-market casino.

"If there was going to be anything in the tower with any gaming capacity, it would be VIP-style gaming," he told analysts on a conference call.

The New South Wales state government would need to approve any gaming licence, since Echo currently holds Sydney's exclusive casino licence until 2019. The state government previously welcomed Packer's proposal as a boost to tourism.

Lend Lease has said it is in talks with a number of hotel groups for the site, including Crown.

Shares in Crown gained 1.5 percent in morning trade and Lend Lease was up 0.3 percent, against a broader market down 0.8 percent. (Reuters)

'Amazing Spider-Man' Tops Box Office, Snares $140 Million Over Six Days...

After a record-setting opening day, "The Amazing Spider-Man" remained strong through the weekend, helping the Sony/Columbia production earn $140 million in less than a week in theaters. Oliver Stone's "Savages" also opened with a decent $16 million in revenue, though music documentary "Katy Perry: Part of Me" struggled to find an audience and racked up just $7 million. Seth MacFarlane's "Ted" also continued to hit with its target demographic, hauling in $32 million and pushing its 10-day total to an enormous $120 million in domestic revenue.

With a $230 million production budget and a very large built-in fan base, expectations were understandably high for "The Amazing Spider-Man." The Sony/Columbia reboot didn't take long to find its audience, racking up $35 million in revenue on Tuesday alone and putting up solid numbers throughout the rest of the week. "The Amazing Spider-Man" ended up with $65 million in weekend revenue, helping it to hit the lofty industry expectations.

Globally, "The Amazing Spider-Man" also got off to a good start by bringing in more than $200 million in revenue outside of the U.S. After already eclipsing $340 million worldwide, "The Amazing Spider-Man" will easily cruise past $500 million in worldwide revenue in the coming weeks, though it's still unclear whether it will be able to challenge the franchise-best $890 million that "Spider-Man 3" brought in. Without any major new competition until "The Dark Knight Rises" opens in a couple weeks, "Spider-Man" should remain a box office stalwart and continue to put up some big overall numbers throughout the rest of the month.

As mainstream action audiences came out in droves to see the new version of "Spider-Man," older audience members turned up for Oliver Stone's thriller "Savages." Backed by some decent critical reviews, "Savages" ended up with a decent $16 million in opening revenue - a strong total for a $45 million production. "Savages" also doesn't have to worry about too much new competition next weekend, opening the door for another decent revenue haul.

While "Spider-Man" and "Savages" mainly hit with their target demographics, "Katy Perry: Part of Me" wasn't quite as fortunate. "Katy Perry" managed just $7.15 million over the weekend and $10.25 million in its first four days following its Thursday release. Though these are unimpressive numbers for a release of more than 2,700 total venues, "Katy Perry" also comes with a slender production budget of just $12 million. "Katy Perry" won't end up as one of the most lucrative music documentaries released in recent years, but it should end up as an overall success for distributor Paramount.

Aiming at a much different demographic than "Katy Perry" this weekend was "Ted," which headed into its second weekend with plenty of buzz. After dominating the box office a week ago and posting $54 million, "Ted" dipped just 40% from its opening totals and finished the weekend with $32 million. Now with $120 million domestically in just 10 days in theaters, "Ted" is easily the top R-rated hit of the year and might even challenge $200 million in the U.S. if it can remain strong in the coming weekends.

Also continuing to hit with its intended audience was Pixar/Disney's "Brave." "Brave" earned $20 million in its third weekend in theaters, pushing it to a very solid $174 million in its first 17 days. Foreign numbers have been slow so far for "Brave," though that should also change as it gets released in its biggest overseas markets in the coming weekends. The only real problem for "Brave" is the impending release of "Ice Age: Continental Drift," which opens this weekend with an enormous built-in family audience.

Next weekend, the release schedule will slow down, as "Ice Age: Continental Drift" is the only new title slated to hit theaters in wide release. Though not as touted as some other animated franchises, "Ice Age" has been a great success for Fox, with enormous worldwide revenues despite production budgets roughly half the size of Pixar releases. The following weekend, Christopher Nolan's "The Dark Knight Rises" brings a similar amount of hype as "The Avengers" and is a lock to dominate the box office well into August.

Early Studio Box Office Estimates for 7/6/12 - 7/8/12 (In Millions):

1. The Amazing Spider-Man (Sony/Columbia): $65 [$70]

2. Ted (Universal): $32.59 [$32]

3. Brave (Disney): $20.16 [$18]

4. Savages (Universal): $16.16 [$13.5]

5. Magic Mike (Warner Brothers): $15.61 [$21]

6. Tyler Perry's Madea's Witness Protection (Lionsgate): $10.20 [$11.5]

7. Madagascar 3: Europe's Most Wanted (Paramount/Dreamworks): $7.70 [$6.4]

8. Katy Perry: Part of Me (Paramount): $7.15 [$13]

9. Moonrise Kingdom (Focus): $4.64 [$2.6]

10. To Rome with Love (Sony Classics): $3.50 [N/A]

Hugh Jackman Joined By Six Additions to Cast of The Wolverine...

If director James Mangold's (3:10 to Yuma) The Wolverine hadn't been beset by weather, script and scheduling problems — title star Hugh Jackman opted to star in the musical version of Les Miserables rather than wait for those issues to be sorted out — the movie would currently be in post-production, with potentially enough edited footage to offer at least a teaser at this week's San Diego Comic-Con. As it is, Mangold is spending his time in the casting room, rather than the editing room, as he tries to put together a cast to support Jackman. In the last several days, six actors have joined the cast of The Wolverine, which takes Logan (Jackman) far away from his X-Men teammates and his wilderness retreat in Canada to Japan, where he must fight against the Silver Samurai and the deadly Hand ninjas at his command.

Written by Chris McQuarrie (Valkyrie), with rewrites by Mark Bomback (Live Free or Die Hard), The Wolverine is based on the classic Marvel Comics limited series Wolverine by Chris Claremont and Frank Miller, creator of Sin City and 300. The series stripped away Wolverine's superhero trappings and thrust him into a Japanese underworld brimming with feudal warriors and mystical ninjas. According to the list compiled by Empire from various sources, the cast will include: Hiroyuki Sanada (Speed Race) as Japanese crimelord Shingen Harada, leader of Clan Yashida; Tao Okamoto as Shingen's daughter and Wolverine's love interest, Mariko Yashida; Will Yun Lee (Total Recall remake) as Mariko's mutant half-brother, Kenuichio Harada, a.k.a. the Silver Samurai; Rila Fukushima as Yukio, an assassin who drugs Wolverine before his duel with Shingen; Hal Yamanouchi (The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou) as Yashida; and Brian Tee (Wedding Palace) as Noboru Mori, a corrupt minister of justice betrothed to Mariko.

The Wolverine is set to begin shooting next month. It will primarily be filmed in Jackman's native Australia, but will also shoot on location in Japan.

Next Showing:The Wolverine is slated to open July 26, 2013 (Reelz)

Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson In Highest Paid Actors List...

Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson was listed at #4 on the Forbes annual list of the highest paid actors in the world over the past year. Johnson was reported as earning $36 million this past year, behind only Tom Cruise ($75 million), Leonardo DiCaprio ($37 million) and Adam Sandler ($37 million). warns over 'predictable' Euro 2012 results... digital entertainment, the world’s largest listed online gaming company, said a run of “predictable” results in the Euro 2012 football championships marred an otherwise “solid” second quarter performance.

The football tournament, in which all of the favourites progressed to the later stages, is believed to have hit the betting industry hard this summer.

Bwin said customer numbers and activity rose during the tournament but gross margins were “lower than expected”.

Despite this, the online gambling group said its casino and bingo products helped offset the weakness in sports betting and “continued pressures” in poker.

Bwin had been in negotiations with Shuffle Master (NasdaqGS: SHFL - news) to offload Ongame, its poker network, but talks were aborted at the end of last month after the two sides failed to reach agreement.

In a pre-close trading update on Tuesday, bwin said several parties were interested in buying Ongame.

The group claims it has reached a top three market position in Spain, where online gaming was recently opened up by authorities.

Looking ahead, the company warned gaming taxes in Germany and an investment in social games games that are played through sites such as Facebook would impact its performance in the second half. (News Corp)

Zynga is “all in” to acquire poker business Ongame: Report...

Social gaming juggernaut Zynga is poised to take over online poker provider Ongame Network from its current owner, Internet gambling powerhouse

An exclusive report from eGaming Review (eGR) – behind a paywall – says Zynga is ‘leading the race’ to acquire Ongame, although there are four other unnamed bidders at the table (poker pun intended).

Zynga has made a ‘verbal offer’, according to eGR’s sources, and have reportedly visited Ongame’s Stockholm headquarters last Friday.

Gambling table and slot machine maker Shuffle Master had already agreed and announced that it would be purchasing for up to $38.9 million in cash in February 2012, but it dropped those plans last week.

Interestingly, Shuffle Master said it would pay out 10 million euros ($12.6 million) of that total purchase price within five years of the transaction closing, provided that real-money online poker would be legal in the United States within such period – something that will happen eventually but is taking time.

Not familiar with Ongame? Here’s what they do, according to their website:

Ongame is the world’s leading B2B online poker provider, serving partnes including bwin, Betfair, Betsson and Unibet. Reaching over 20 million customers in more than 25 markets, with an international network licensed in Gibraltar, as well as regional networks in Italy and France.

Ongame is the premier choice for sportsbook operators, providing a poker environment optimized for recreational players and a proven track record of increasing partner revenues.

Ongame claims P5, the game engine powering its poker offering, is the ‘most advanced poker engine ever designed’.

The company is owned by as a result of an earlier merger, and has been dubbed by the latter as a ‘surplus asset’.

Zynga of course offers a wildly popular poker game called – wait for it – Zynga Poker, which can be played on, Facebook, iOS and Android devices.

In fact, Zynga Poker was the company’s very first game.

It certainly makes a lot of sense for them to buy Ongame Networks, even if it’s to keep it out of the hands of other players looking to move online with poker games as soon as it becomes legal in the US, and the company certainly has the cash on hand to make this kind of acquisition.

'Amazing Spider-Man' finishes weekend with $62M...

LOS ANGELES (AP) "The Amazing Spider-Man" had a slightly slower start at the box office than initially estimated, taking in $62 million domestically over opening weekend.

The final numbers Monday came in $3 million lower than the $65 million that distributor Sony had projected a day earlier, but it still was a healthy start for the new take on the Marvel Comics superhero.

Since opening last Tuesday, "The Amazing Spider-Man" has taken in $137 million domestically. Its worldwide total is about $340 million since it began rolling out overseas the previous week.

The top 20 movies at U.S. and Canadian theaters Friday through Sunday, followed by distribution studio, gross, number of theater locations, average receipts per location, total gross and number of weeks in release, as compiled Monday by are:

1. "The Amazing Spider Man," Sony, $62,004,688, 4,318 locations, $14,360 average, $137,022,258, one week.

2. "Ted," Universal, $32,202,395, 3,256 locations, $9,890 average, $119,849,740, two weeks.

3. "Brave," Disney, $19,612,370, 3,891 locations, $5,040 average, $173,969,341, three weeks.

4. "Savages," Universal, $16,016,910, 2,628 locations, $6,095 average, $16,016,910, one week.

5. "Magic Mike," Warner Bros., $15,642,337, 3,120 locations, $5,014 average, $72,829,107, two weeks.

6. "Tyler Perry's Madea's Witness Protection," Lionsgate, $10,177,029, 2,161 locations, $4,709 average, $45,822,984, two weeks.

7. "Madagascar 3: Europe's Most Wanted," Paramount, $7,520,690, 2,861 locations, $2,629 average, $195,905,126, five weeks.

8. "Katy Perry: Part of Me," Paramount, $7,138,266, 2,730 locations, $2,615 average, $10,240,213, one week.

9. "Moonrise Kingdom," Focus Features, $4,519,195, 884 locations, $5,112 average, $26,780,989, seven weeks.

10. "To Rome with Love," Sony Pictures Classics, $3,104,328, 806 locations, $3,852 average, $4,863,538, three weeks.

11. "People Like Us," Disney, $2,194,535, 2,055 locations, $1,068 average, $9,190,902, two weeks.

12. "The Avengers," Disney, $2,168,124, 1,125 locations, $1,927 average, $611,127,884, 10 weeks.

13. "Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter," Fox, $1,944,534, 1,657 locations, $1,174 average, $34,050,910, three weeks.

14. "Prometheus," Fox, $1,815,500, 1,105 locations, $1,643 average, $122,390,274, five weeks.

15. "Snow White & the Huntsman," Universal, $1,768,355, 1,152 locations, $1,535 average, $149,756,565, six weeks.

16. "Men in Black 3," Sony, $1,680,714, 879 locations, $1,912 average, $173,089,690, seven weeks.

17. "The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel," Fox Searchlight, $741,091, 359 locations, $2,064 average, $41,991,873, 10 weeks.

18. "Rock of Ages," Warner Bros., $639,406, 701 locations, $912 average, $36,974,619, four weeks.

19. "That's My Boy," Sony, $621,656, 400 locations, $1,554 average, $36,100,833, four weeks.

20. "Bol Bachchan," FIP, $561,996, 98 locations, $5,735 average, $561,996, one week.

Universal and Focus are owned by NBC Universal, a unit of Comcast Corp.; Sony, Columbia, Sony Screen Gems and Sony Pictures Classics are units of Sony Corp.; Paramount is owned by Viacom Inc.; Disney, Pixar and Marvel are owned by The Walt Disney Co.; Miramax is owned by Filmyard Holdings LLC; 20th Century Fox and Fox Searchlight are owned by News Corp.; Warner Bros. and New Line are units of Time Warner Inc.; MGM is owned by a group of former creditors including Highland Capital, Anchorage Advisors and Carl Icahn; Lionsgate is owned by Lions Gate Entertainment Corp.; IFC is owned by AMC Networks Inc.; Rogue is owned by Relativity Media LLC.

Broker snap: Taxing times for, says Peel Hunt...

Peel Hunt has pared its target price for online gaming group digital entertainment from 140p to 124p and maintained its ‘hold’ rating on the stock.

‘The H1 pre-close held few surprises and no real catalyst to get the shares moving. At the current point the rating reflects concerns about Germany and a lack of visibility in many of the group’s markets,’ said analyst Nick Batram.

‘This is unlikely to change in the short term and further downgrades reflect the uncertain margin environment.’

The broker says that the uncertain regulatory backdrop continues to hit the bottom line, with federal sports taxes in Germany set to reduce EBITDA (earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation) by EUR5-10m.

Peel Hunt has reduced its clean EBITDA forecast by EUR10m to EUR165m for the year ending December 2012. The 2013 EBITDA estimate has been cut from EUR196m to EUR175m.

‘While regulation is the main factor, the business’s underlying performance is also a growing concern, particularly the rate at which poker is going backwards,’ Batram said.

Shares were down 3.25% at 104.3p by 10:56 on Tuesday.

Roger Moore croons 007 birthday song...

PARIS — One-time 007 Roger Moore has teamed up with a former Bond Girl to record a song marking 50 years of the spy's on-screen adventures, a James Bond fan club said on Wednesday.

The 84-year-old British actor took over Bond film duties from Sean Connery in 1973, making his debut in "Live and Let Die" before completing the sequence with "A View to a Kill" 12 years later.

He teamed up with Irka Bochenko, his co-star in the 1979 film "Moonraker", for the anniversary duet titled "Happy Birthday Mr. Bond!", the spy's French fan club told AFP.

Extracts will be posted online at ahead of the record's release in September.

Hundreds of items -- from tuxedos to bikinis and vodka martinis -- went on show at London's Barbican Centre last week to mark 50 years since Bond made the jump from Ian Fleming's novels to the silver screen with the 1962 "Dr No".

The next Bond movie, "Skyfall", directed by Sam Mendes with Daniel Craig as the glamorous spy, will hit world screens from October.


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The Voice Finalists perform live at Warringah Mall, Sydney, Australia - 19th July 2012


The Voice Music Television Australia

Darren Percival, Sarah De Bono and Rachael Leahcar enjoyed a public appearance at Warringah Mall, on Sydney's northern beaches this afternoon.

The former contestants on Channel Nine's 'The Voice' were there to promote their music of course.

Hundreds of passionate fans showed up to offer their support and a few lucky ones who bought CD's of their favourite performers from 'The Voice' got them autographed. Their music can also be enjoyed via iTunes.

We wish all of the performing artists well as their careers continue to evolve in front of appreciative Australian audiences.


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Virgin Casino to Release Necker Island Slot Game


Virgin Casino Virgin Games IGT Microgaming Casino Slots Richard Branson Necker Island

Virgin Casino have added a ton of new slot games over the past week.


Virgin Casino has announced that it is releasing a new slot game entitled Necker Island this week.

Necker Island is a new 5 reel, 50 pay-line slot game that is being developed by Genesis Gaming Inc. The game has a theme based on the private island hideaway owned by Virgin Casino founder Sir Richard Branson.

The game also includes an additional row of symbols that gives players a greater chance of winning. Players can win free spins and also have the chance to unlock a free wild game. The game will be released on Virgin Casino’s QuickFire platform.

Warren Eloff, Virgin Games Head of Products, said “We wanted to create a game exclusively for our Virgin Games players – something that only we could offer and that truly summed up being part of the Virgin community. As such, we thought it would be ideally fitting to have a game created by Genesis Gaming that was themed around Sir Richard Branson’s luxurious private island."

Eloff added “As an operator, offering our customers seamless game play is crucial, and as a Virgin company maintaining brand integrity is a must. Using Microgaming’s QuickFire platform has delivered on both counts - offering both easy integration and allowing us to give our players a unique Virgin Games experience.”

Steven Meisrich, CEO for Genesis Gaming Inc, stated "It was exciting for our team to build a customized and branded video slot game consistent with the quality and fun users expect from the Virgin brand. We are also pleased that Necker Island will be integrated to the Quickfire platform as we have a successful partnership already in place and are confident that it can maintain the optimal experience for Virgin players.”

QuickFire also released a statement saying “We’re delighted that Virgin Games have chosen the Quickfire platform to host this unique game. It’s always great to be involved in something a bit different, particularly as the involvement of Genesis Gaming Inc. has allowed us to work alongside a company with whom we already have a strong relationship. We’re confident that this exclusive product will please new and existing players alike.”


Virgin Casino Releases Reely Poker Slot Game...

Virgin Casino announced the release of its latest slot game title called Reely Poker this week.
This new game is a 5 reel, 30 pay-line slot game and has a theme based on poker. In fact, the game incorporates both a slot game experience with the opportunity for players to play some poker as well.

The game begins in a slots format. The symbols are represented by the playing cards and the wild symbol is represented by the joker and the scatter symbol is represented by the ace. The maximum payout is 5,000 coins and this is offered by the joker wild symbol.

There is a bonus feature called the Multi-hand Infinite Hold’em Bonus. This is activated when the player hits three or more ace scatter symbols. The number of hands dealt to the player in this bonus depends on how many ace scatter symbols the player hit to activate the bonus. The player then wins a bonus depending on how strong the poker hands they receive are with a bonus of 2 coins being paid out for a pair and a bonus of 500 coins being paid out for a royal flush. The player keeps playing in this bonus round if they hit a two pair or higher.

Players can also activate the Slot Poker aspect of this game. For every spin, a side bet of 10 times the line bet will be automatically taken from the player. The player must then choose one of the horizontal rows. The cards that appear on that chosen row are the given hand for that spin. The player will then win if the hand on that chosen row is better than the hands on the other two rows. The Slot Poker part of the game will continue to function until the player de-activates it.

Reely Poker is available to play at Virgin Casino right now.

If you haven’t got an account at Virgin Casino, now is the time – they offer a 100% welcome bonus up to £100. This means that if you deposit anything up to £100, you will get the same value free. When registering, click on the ‘Select A Bonus’ button and select the ‘Casino’ option – simple.

*Virgin Casino does not accept Australian, U.S or Canadian players. See World Casino Directory.

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Thursday, July 19, 2012

UK up and coming talent hosted by Nick Grimshaw at exclusive music biz event

Three of the UK’s most exciting and credible artists Friendly Fires, Mylo and Joe Goddard will mentor the next generation of talent...


Music Entertainment Events

Get togethers of music industry talent, top brass and the like, with helpful sponsors and supports, still have their place in the world, as is the case with our friends in the biz up in the United Kingdom...

The best of the UK’s up-and-coming talent was unveiled at an exclusive London launch party hosted by Nick Grimshaw, performing infront of key music industry influencers and celebrity guests including Pixie Geldoff, Caroline Flack and Jameela Jamil.

Friendly Fires, Mylo and Joe Goddard have each selected an artist to mentor and showcase their sound to a wider audience. Friendly Fires is working with twisted-pop duo AlunaGeorge, Mylo is showcasing Ronika, a singer, songwriter and producer from Nottingham, and Joe Goddard is mentoring vocalist Jessie Ware, who is due to release her debut album in August 2012.

The established artists will each be given a £10,000 Bacardi Beginnings bursary that will be used to raise the profile of their chosen artists, whether it’s producing an exclusive remix, putting on a gig in an unusual location, or creating an exciting collaboration.

Bacardi Beginnings will provide a platform for these handpicked musicians to raise their profile in a very competitive industry, while marking Bacardi's 150th anniversary of throwing great parties, and bringing people together over great music and great drinks.

This exclusive web video shows these established artists showcasing their selected acts in London, together with interviews with the artists and Radio 1 DJ Nick Grimshaw.




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Ladyhawke performs at Metro Theatre, Sydney, Australia - 18th July 2012


Music Sydney Entertainment Australia

New Zealand's Pip Brown (Ladyhawke) performed at Sydney's Metro Theatre tonight to an appreciated audience.

She's not quite a household name (yet), but many leading artists took years to get on the national or international radar.

Ladyhawk has released her second album 'Anxiety', and has also secured a headline tour plus a few big festival dates.

Apart from her unique sound, which someone was overheard saying "a more spiritual version of early David Bowie, Cyndi Lauper, shades of Nirvana, and Blondie - Debra Harry", the Kiwi also has an interesting look...heavily lined eyes, untamed blonde hair and a grungy dress thing going on.

Anxiety demonstrates a different side of Ladyhawk with rocking beats and also ballads such as ‘Cellophane’, and at other times she takes you back to her pop tradition with numbers such as ‘Black, White & Blue’ and 'Blue Eyes'.

On her music Ms Hawk said "I wanted the album to feel like it could fall apart at times and that the songs were just trying to hold it all together with these little bleeps in and out of the songs all the way through for no rhyme or reason. I wanted the music to be anxious."

Support band was 'All The Colours' who were very solid.

Well done to everyone associated with the success of tonight's entertainment.


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Controversial Hand in the WSOP Main Event - 18th July 2012

Controversial Hand in the WSOP Main Event


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I have never been a poker tournament director, but I would imagine one of the most difficult aspects of the job is making rulings on hands in which there are both confusion and disagreement at the table. Especially in a situation where there are potentially millions of dollars at stake. Such was the case this weekend with a controversial hand deep into the 2012 World Series of Poker (WSOP) Main Event, a hand that may have shaped the rest of the tournament.

It was very late on Day 5, close to 1:00 in the morning, and there were about 100 players remaining of the original 6,598. The action at one of the tables folded all the way around to France’s Gaelle Baumann under the gun, who opened the pre-flop betting with a min-raise to 60,000. The button folded and then Andras Koroknai of Hungary moved all-in for somewhere around 2 million chips from the small blind. Gavin Smith then folded from the big blind and the action was back to Baumann, one of the tournament’s chip leaders.

But it wasn’t. As soon as Smith folded, Koroknai mucked his cards, thinking that the hand was over and that he had won. For whatever reason, he didn’t realize Baumann had raised or even bet anything at all. He thought he had been the first to act, so when Smith folded, the hand was finished. When he realized what he had done, he tried to retrieve his cards from the muck, but was only able to positively locate one of them.

Tournament Director Dennis Jones was called over and after some thought, he decided that Koroknai would lose the 60,000 chips that would have amounted to a call, but he would get to keep the rest of his stack. The players, particularly Baumann and Smith, were confused by the ruling, so Jones called WSOP VP Jack Effel, who confirmed the decision. Jones cited the “integrity of the tournament” as the reason for not requiring Koroknai to lose all of his chips.

As it turned out, Koroknai would go on to eliminate Baumann in 10th place a couple days later, dashing the hopes the poker community had of seeing the first woman at the Main Event final table since 1995, when Barbara Enright placed 5th (he also eliminated Elisabeth Hille in 11th place). Koroknai goes into the final table 2nd in chips.

When this hand was originally reported, much of the poker community was up in arms. It was an angleshoot! He mucked, he’s done! Too bad, don’t be so stupid next time! The outrage was deafening.

But here’s the thing, it was the correct ruling. Official WSOP rule 89 states:

All chips put into the pot in turn stay in the pot. If a Participant has raised and his or her hand is killed before the raise is called, the Participant may be entitled to the raise back, but will forfeit the amount of the call. Any chips put into the pot out of turn fall under the action “may or may not be binding” Rule No. 88.

Koroknai raised all-in. His hand was killed before the raise was called, albeit by Koroknai himself, but it was still killed. According to the rule, he gets his raise back, but loses the amount of the call which was 60,000 chips.

So really, case closed.

But even if that rule did not exist, if the Tournament Director had to just come up with a decision out of thin air, I still don’t have a problem with the ruling. I agree with the “integrity of the tournament” opinion (which also makes it seem like the Tournament Director did not remember the rule quoted above and was, in fact, just making a judgment call). From everything I have read, it does not appear that Koroknai was trying to be devious, he wasn’t angleshooting. He didn’t know what Baumann had. It may have been the result of fatigue or the language barrier or any number of things, but it looked like he honestly did not realize Baumann had raised and he mucked as soon as Smith folded. He didn’t wait to see if Baumann might call and then mucked his hand. He thought the hand was over.

Sure, he should have known to protect his cards until the dealer shipped him the pot, but everyone makes mistakes.

In a case like this, when there was obviously no intent to cheat or angleshoot, it wouldn’t make sense to just say, “Sorry, even though we know nobody in their right mind would forfeit all their chips while all-in, we’re going to take them because, mistake or not, you mucked.” That wouldn’t be in the spirit of the game.

Things are more complicated because one card was irretrievable, but that doesn’t negate my point that the logical and reasonable thing to do would be to allow Koroknai to stay in the tournament. Maybe penalizing him an orbit or making him forfeit some additional chips (say, in the amount of a min-raise or something) would be appropriate, but to send him home for doing something that he obviously didn’t intend to do would be ludicrous.

Word is that Baumann eventually showed pocket Kings, so unless Koroknai had Aces, she likely would have won the hand, but that’s beside the point. Plus, who knows, it may have been a lucky break for her, as she might’ve avoided a suckout. But none of that really matters. The floor made the correct decision, even if it wasn’t laid out in black and white in the rulebook. (Poker News Daily)

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Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Sarah De Bono appears at Macquarie Shopping Centre, Sydney - 14th July 2012


The Voice Sydney Television Australia

Sarah De Bono enjoyed a public appearance at Macquarie Shopping Centre this afternoon.

The former contestant on Channel Nine's 'The Voice' was there to promote her new album, 'No Shame'.

Hundreds of passionate De Bono fans showed up to offer their support and her future appears bright based on her loyal fan following.

Sarah De Bono's album 'No Shame' was released yesterday.

Radio network Nova sponsored the event.

About Sarah...

Signed recording artist - With her smooth powerhouse vocals, reminiscent of the late Whitney & her unique Pop/Urban/RnB sound, Sarah is sure to push boundaries across the Australian & International music scene


Signed recording artist Sarah De Bono is one of Australias unique upcoming artists. With her smooth powerhouse vocals, reminiscent of the old Whitney and her unique Pop/Urban/RnB sound, Sarah is sure to push boundaries across the Australian and International scene. Currently a contestant of the national television show The Voice Australia, Sarah is quickly becoming one of Australia's best new talents.


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Spider-Man inspired by masked luchadors; Spider-Man movie has strong ties to pro wrestling; "Macho Man" Randy Savage connection


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Spider-Man Inspired By Masked Luchadors...

In The Amazing Spider-Man, which hit theaters Tuesday, Peter Parker is inspired to create a mask after winding up inside a wrestling ring surrounded by posters of masked luchadors. It is not the first wrestling connection in the movie franchise as in the premiere film released in 2002, Peter enters a wrestling tournament and squares off against a character portrayed by the late Randy "Macho Man" Savage.

Spider-Man movie has strong ties to pro wrestling; "Macho Man" Randy Savage connection...

The Amazing Spider-Man was released during the Independence Day week and so far the flick has performed well, netting in $35 U.S million on its opening day.

While the record-setting Tuesday opening is awesome, it is something else which has pro wrestling fans excited about the latest reboot of the superhero franchise.

In the original film, starring Tobey Maguire, we witnessed Spider-Man enter a pro wrestling match in order to win a sum of cash which would allow him to purchase a used car he thought would impress Mary Jane.

Initially, Peter Parker wanted to be called The Human Spider, but Bruce Campbell put a stop to that nonsense and sent him down to the ring as Spider-Man.

As if seeing the man most famously known as Ash Williams wasn't enough, we were treated to a second cameo within seconds.

Spidey was facing off against Bonesaw McGraw, who was played by the late, great Randy "Macho Man" Savage.

It was here where Spidey first faced off against a foe who put him through hell.

This cameo by the legendary "Macho Man" was warmly welcomed by wrestling fans who had missed Savage. The new film, featuring Andrew Garfield as the webby one has gone back to its roots and given Peter Parker another wrestling-based inspiration.

At one point in the film Peter Parker is walking away from a group of hoodlums he had just schooled when he falls through a roof, landing in the middle of a wrestling ring.

When he stood up and looked around he saw what provided him with the inspiration for his signature mask.

The small arena was filled with signs featuring Lucha Libre masks, one of which catches Parker's eye more than the others.

The mask is red with dark-colored designs surrounding the eyes, nearly an exact copy of Spidey's look sans the webbing all over the face area.

Director Marc Webb made a lot of wrestling fans happy by inserting another inspiration for Spider-Man which is based in the world of pro wrestling.

Wrestling fans and comic book fans have a large cross over audience which these film makers have smartly plugged into - further casting their own web, to help increase net profits of course.

Comics and pro wrestling have a few elements in common. They both feature people dressed in fancy outfits, have signature attacks / finishing moves, and have a good VS evil theme for the most part.

Both Marc Webb and Sam Raimi chose to use wrestling as a launching pad for Peter Parker is also another point that wrestling fans are high on.

This latest part of the Hollywood - pro wrestling connection has gone over well and may even lead to the wrestling themes been further cast out in the Hollywood movie web and the movie industry wrestles attempting to get back some of the glory and money it used to make.

Marvel Entertainment Movies: Amazing Spider-Man, Thor 2, The Avengers Et Al Boost Popularity Of Marvel Slot Games...

The Media Man agency reports that Marvel themed online slot games across the network, and featured at partner, , are boosting the popularity of the superhero themed online slot games. Bwin.Party currently offers The Incredible Hulk, Thor, The Amazing Spider-Man and Fantastic Four, with more expected to soon hit the popular gaming and entertainment website destination.

WWE Keen To Work With UFC Fighter; Ties To C.M Punk And "Stone Cold" Steve Austin...

Various news media is reporting that WWE is interested in working with 35 year old UFC fighter "The American Gangster" Chael Sonnen. Sonnen lost to Anderson Silva at Saturday's UFC 148 pay-per-view but word is that WWE is ready to negotiate. No word yet if they want him to wrestle or play another kind of role.

Sonnen has ties to WWE as he is mates with WWE Champion CM Punk. Punk was ready to accompany Sonnen to the Octagon for a fight several months back but that was nixed.

Sonnen is also close to WWE Hall of Famer Steve Austin. Austin has been bringing Sonnen out to his Broken Skull Ranch in Texas to help him with strength and conditioning training.

UFC 148: Chael Sonnen's Coach Planned Appeal, Demands Rematch from UFC Top Brass Dana White...

Although middleweight contender Chael Sonnen seemed to accept his loss to Anderson Silva at UFC 148, we have learned that Sonnen's team is less forgiving of Silva's potentially illegal tactics. They think that a knee strike to a seated Sonnen, which hit the challenger in the chest, also connected solidly with Sonnen's face, making it an illegal strike.

"Chael's not the kind of guy who likes to complain after a fight," Sonnen's head trainer Scott McQuarry said. "I felt I needed to take this action to protect him. At the point of impact, Anderson had his hand locked in the cage and his feet left the ground. We believe his intentions were clear.

"We started the process of filing a complaint with the Nevada Athletic Commission. We believe the knee that Anderson Silva threw was illegal with the clear intent to strike the face. And it did in fact connect with the face. Chael bit his tongue and needed eight stitches."

McQuarry believes the potentially illegal knee changed the remainder of the fight, creating the opening for Silva to finish the bout with punches. After contacting Nevada Athletic Commission executive director Keith Kizer to determine how to proceed, he was informed that filing a complaint would almost certainly not result in the fight being declared a no contest.

Rather, McQuarry is taking his case to the fans and UFC president Dana White.

"What I'm going to do is change my tactic," McQuarry said. "We're going to ask for a rematch. We deserve a rematch. If the only way Anderson Silva can win is by cheating, we need to keep a closer eye on Silva before and during a fight. And we need a rematch now. Legal knee or illegal knee, there's enough doubt with all the fouls to warrant a rematch."

In addition to the knee strike, Silva was also caught rubbing Vaseline on his chest. Although referee Yves Lavigne caught this, McQuarry says that the substance sinks into the pores, making simply wiping it off ineffective. Additionally, Silva was warned twice for grabbing Sonnen's shorts during the fight.

"I think it did make a difference in the outcome," McQuarry said. "I know that Chael grabbed Silva's shorts briefly too in response, but not for 15 seconds and two punches."

While Sonnen and his team weigh their options, McQuarry hopes the people will make their voices heard.

"They need to call the UFC. We need a rematch. Chael is a great champion and deserves a fair fight."

In the meantime Sonnen is understood to be keen to further open up lines of communication with the WWE, and this will likely be facilitated by friends in the business including "Stone Cold" Steve Austin and C.M Punk.

Right not Sonnen is hot property and is doing well to keep his name in the press as excitement grows as to what next for this unique and tough as nails talent.

WWE Legend Bob Backlund May Return To WWE RAW Tonight...

Former two time WWF Champion Bob Backlund is heavily expected to be the returning “main event” legend during tonight’s WWE Raw SuperShow. The likelihood is he will be wrestling or at the very least will be involved in an angle with Heath Slater, as has been the segments in previous weeks involving Vader, "Rowdy" Roddy Piper, Psycho Sid and Doink The Clown and "Diamond" Dallas Page.

News media reports that Backlund was visiting his mother at her Minnesota rest home this past weekend and was telling people there that he was heading to fly right out to Denver, Colardo, which is the location for tonight’s WWE Raw SuperShow.

Backlund last appeared on WWE television back in 2007 at the RAW 15th anniversary show that December where he participated in a Battle Royal. That appearance came just a few short months after Backlund defeated Alex Shelley at TNA’s Slammiversary pay-per-view and also after wrestled at TNA Victory Road.

62-year-old Backlund holds the record for the second longest WWF title reign in history and was one of the biggest wrestling stars of the late 70′s and early 80′s. He had a second, less successful stint with the WWF in the early 90′s and even appeared in the Attitude Era at the 2000 Royal Rumble and briefly managed former Olympian Kurt Angle.


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The Dark Knight Rises: Sydney, Australia Premiere At IMAX - 17th July 2012


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Tuesday night Sydney, Australia enjoyed the red (dark black) carpet premiere for the latest Batman based movie - 'The Dark Knight Rises' at beautiful Darling Harbour.

Superhero movies remain popular in Australia and 'Dark Knight' will have to make a massive rise if its to best Marvel Entertainment flicks 'The Avengers' and their latest flick 'Amazing Spider-Man'.

Batman has an extremely strong fan following and goes back decades and the superhero TV series and cartoons even today still run on News Limited owned Foxtel.

Local Australian celebrities who walked the dark black carpet included Andrew Steel, Annalise Braakensiek, Charlotte Dawson, Claire Hooper, David Campbell, David Koch, Didier Cohen, Emma Lung, Joel Edgerton, Josh Flinn, Josh Pyke, Kate Peck, Kyle Sandilands, Leeanna Walsman, Leona Edmiston, Les Hill, Lizzy Lovette, Magdalena Roze, Matt Corby, Matt Doran, Melissa Hoyer, Mia Freedman, Renee Brack, Sam Macmillan, Tamara Jaber and Tim Pocock.

The final chapter in director Christopher Nolan's Batman trilogy will impress everyone - both hardcore and casual fans, as well as most fair media critics.

The action begins with Batman having long been declared an outlaw and parked his Batmobile, and his alter ego billionaire Bruce Wayne now an eccentric recluse.

Still suffering by the loss of not only his parents as a child but also the love of his life, Batman wants nothing to do with his beloved Gotham City, which is in a period of peace and prosperity as a result of his heroic deeds.

Before long a mysterious masked terrorist known as Bane turns up and its bat out of hell time.

We're not going to spoil the ending for you, but its all done in pretty cool fashion.

'The Dark Knight Rises' will be released in Australian cinemas and IMAX nationally on the 19th of July 2012.

Fly in to see what is tipped to be one of the better superhero themed movies this year.

Director: Christopher Nolan
Writers: Christopher Nolan, Jonathan Nolan

Christian Bale
Michael Caine
Anne Hathaway
Tom Hardy
Gary Oldman
Marion Cotillard
Joseph Gordon-Levitt
Morgan Freeman
Juno Temple

Christopher Nolan
Charles Roven
Emma Thomas
Thomas Tull (executive)


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Tuesday, July 17, 2012

PartyCasino Wins Media Man 'Online Casino Of The Month' Award has been awarded the Media Man and Casino News Media "Online Casino Of The Month" award.

Bwin.Party's igaming suite has grown a custom to winning awards since they first opened for business in 1997.

The competition for the coveted award was intense again this month with massive bids from both Virgin Casino, PKR Casino and Captain Cooks Casino however there can only be one winner... ladies and gentlemen, that's

The award follows PartyPoker's EGR Poker Operator Of The Year and PartyGaming also made the shortlist for EGR Operator Of The Year. Recently PartyGaming's also won the Casino News Media "Online Poker Website Of The Month".

The Media Man - Casino News Media accolade is based on a combination of elements including user experience, innovation, trustworthiness, customer service, gameplay, affiliate program offerings, newsworthiness and company values. is one of a number of Bwin.Party Digital Entertainment brands.

The most popular games of late include Heist, Circus, Rambo, Palladium Slot, The Godfather, Sinatra, Slotbox, Call Of Duty 4: Modern Warfare, Mission: Impossible, The Terminator, Cleopatra, Sinatra, Thor, The Incredible Hulk, The Amazing Spider-Man, Monopoly, Resident Evil, Melon Madness, Wheel Of Fortune and Mega Fortune Wheel.

The jackpot is currently approaching the $6 million mark. Players can also compete for The Big One and Marvel Hero Jackpot, playing the Marvel super hero themed online slot games.

PartyCasino's most recent game releases include Shaaark! SuperBet, Crocodopolis, Alice's Wonderland, Glamour Puss, Super Cubes, Heist, Palladium Slot and Circus Slot.

Bwin.Party Digital Entertainment Co-CEO Jim Ryan has gone on record advising PartyCasinowill soon feature more Hollywood blockbuster themed slots. A few in the know journalists and media agents have been recently tipped off that an all time classic movie adaption will be showcased in the PartyCasino portfolio within 1 month. PartyCasino has the world's most impressive line up of Hollywood themed games, and more are just around the corner. and customers can also benefit from rewards and bonuses via PartyPoints and the Palladium Lounge. Be certain to check out the PartyCasino exclusive "Cash Machine" that is being championed as one of the greatest online casino promos ever.

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Monday, July 16, 2012

Hollywood, Gaming, Movie and Celebrity News

Hollywood, Gaming, Casino, Movie and Celebrity News; Casino Hires Robert De Niro as Celebrity Pitch Man; Spider-Man Inspired By Masked Luchadors - Pro Wrestlers; James Packer Crown Limited - Echo Entertainment news update...

From Bondi Beach to all parts of Asia and Hollywood, the world loves casinos, celebs, pro wrestling and Marvel Entertainment superheroes such as Spider-Man. The Media Man agency throws a web over the no holds barred action...


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Casino Hires Robert De Niro as Celebrity Flack...

You talkin' to me?

A casino in South Korea hopes you'll be listening!

The Paradise Walker-Hill Casino in Seoul, South Korea, has announced that it has hired actor Robert De Niro to serve as a paid celebrity spokesman for the casino.

It's not the first or the last time big name Hollywood actors and names have been used in casino tie ins, with Al Pacino doing an intimate audience at Sydney's 'The Star' last year.

The Perth casino promo went something like...

'Burswood is delighted to welcome Nobu to Perth. What started as a partnership in 1994 between chef Nobu Matsuhisa and actor Robert De Niro, has become the world's most recognised Japanese restaurant, with 27 restaurants in 21 different cities.

Esteemed Chef Matsuhisa brings his innovative and intelligent fusion of traditional Japanese cuisine with South American flavours to create the unique dining experience that is Nobu.

Nobu enthusiasts will be delighted with Nobu Perth, with features including an intimate sake bar, and the first ever Nobu Teppanyaki, with private teppan tables.

The refined restaurant interior reflects the elements of earth and water that are key to the cuisine. Stunning blown-glass chandeliers, reminiscent of Japanese lanterns, add to the sense of occasion. Nobu’s highly skilled, knife-wielding chefs turn sushi preparation into a feast of entertainment before your eyes.

Nobu has long been a favourite of international A-listers; accordingly the restaurant offers two fully private rooms, including private balconies and restrooms.

Overlooking the Swan River and the city skyline Nobu Perth is perfect for any occasion that demands something out of the ordinary.'

Back to more recent casino ventures with the legendary actor...

The Korean casino, which is South Korea's oldest and is open to foreigners only--meaning no South Koreans are allowed in--is located in the Sheraton Walker-Hill Hotel, a luxury hotel in Seoul that is popular with tourists and foreign business people.

Large ads featuring De Niro plugging the casino have already begun appearing at Seoul's airport and other locations frequented by tourists.

In addition, the casino announced, television commercials with De Niro promoting the casino were filmed in New York City last month.

The TV spots will not air in the USA.

One of De Niro's most famous movie roles was in the film "Casino," in which he played Ace Rothstein, a character based on real-life mob associate and Stardust Casino executive Frank "Lefty" Rosenthal.

De Niro, like many other American celebrities, does not appear in any commercials or ads in the USA, but does appear in foreign advertising.

Several celebs in recent years, however, have flacked for casinos that advertised in the USA.

Among them are singer Kenny Rogers, whose hit song "The Gambler" permanently linked him to the pastime in the eyes of the American public. Kenny Rogers will be touring Australia in a month or so, along with Glen Campbell, but that's another story.

For years, he has shilled for the Barona Casino, an Indian casino near San Diego.

And former professional wrestler and Minnesota governor Jesse Ventura served as a celebrity spokesman for Bet U.S., an online sportsbook and casino based in Costa Rica.

In addition, baseball Hall of Famer Reggie Jackson once briefly served as a paid celeb shill for an online casino, until Major League Baseball told him to nix the deal or be banned from baseball. (

Spider-Man Inspired By Masked Luchadors...

In The Amazing Spider-Man, which hit theaters Tuesday, Peter Parker is inspired to create a mask after winding up inside a wrestling ring surrounded by posters of masked luchadors. It is not the first wrestling connection in the movie franchise as in the premiere film released in 2002, Peter enters a wrestling tournament and squares off against a character portrayed by the late Randy "Macho Man" Savage.

Marvel Entertainment Movies: Amazing Spider-Man, Thor 2, The Avengers Et Al Boost Popularity Of Marvel Slot Games...

The Media Man agency reports that Marvel themed online slot games across the network, and featured at partner, , are boosting the popularity of the superhero themed online slot games. Bwin.Party currently offers The Incredible Hulk, Thor, The Amazing Spider-Man and Fantastic Four, with more expected to soon hit the popular gaming and entertainment website destination.

Crown Limited puts 25pc limit on Echo Entertainment stake...

The jockeying for position by various stakeholders in casinos operator Echo Entertainment is continuing, with James Packer's Crown Ltd seeking regulatory approval to lift its stake in Echo to 25 per cent.

Casinos operator Crown has added the 25 per cent limit to its application to the NSW Independent Liquor and Gaming Authority and the Queensland government for an increase of its Echo stake to above 10 per cent.

Crown already holds a stake in Echo of 10 per cent.

Echo's constitution restricts a person's voting power to a maximum of 10 per cent unless the written consent of the regulator in NSW and the relevant Queensland minister is obtained.

Crown said on Wednesday that the regulators had accepted the new condition to its application but were yet to decide on whether Crown could exceed the 10 per cent ownership level.

'If Crown is eventually granted approval to increase its ownership in Echo to up to 25 per cent, then Crown would not be able to acquire additional Echo shares such that Crown's ownership interest would increase above 25 per cent without first making another application which would then be subject to further investigation and ultimately a determination by the regulators,' Crown said in a statement.

The changes to Crown's application comes after investment firm Perpetual was granted approval by the NSW Independent Liquor and Gaming Authority and the Queensland government to increase its potential maximum voting power in Echo from 10 per cent to 15 per cent.

However, Perpetual had earlier notified the Australian Securities Exchange, on June 22, that it had ceased to be a substantial shareholder in Echo.

Malaysian gambling group Genting holds a stake of about 9.88 per cent in Echo and has also applied to regulators to lift its stake above 10 per cent.

Fat Prophets analyst Greg Fraser said the fact that Crown had asked to increase its holding up to the figure of 25 per cent was 'interesting'.

If Genting were to aim to acquire 25 per cent also, and both companies did in fact obtain 25 per cent each, Genting and Crown acting in unison would be enough to control Echo without making a takeover bid.

However, there was nothing to indicate yet that Crown and Genting were acting or would act in unison.

Mr Fraser said Crown may not necessarily move to a 25 per cent stake immediately. It could lift its stake to 19.9 per cent - the threshold for making a full takeover bid - and then increase its stake in Echo by three per cent every six months under the 'creep' provisions of the Corporations Act.

'I guess the next step is we wait for Genting to do the same. As the gambling parlance goes: to see your 25 and raise you something',' Mr Fraser said.

Echo operates The Star casino in Sydney, the Treasury casino in Brisbane, Jupiters Townsville and Jupiters Gold Coast.

Crown operates the Crown casino and Melbourne and the Burswood casino in Perth.

Shares in Echo were one cent lower at $4.29 at 1104 AEST on Tuesday.


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