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Danielle Andersen Goes From Online Grinder to Silver Screen
Danielle “dmoongirl” Andersen was unknown to most live poker professionals but those who played and followed online poker knew of her results.
She was regularly crushing the higher stakes cash games online until Black Friday rolled around to suddenly remove a steady stream of income.
Andersen was approached by the production team behind a documentary called Bet Raise Fold, which centered on the world of online poker before and after Black Friday. The crew wanted to feature Andersen prominently in the movie and she agreed.
She flew out to Las Vegas for the movie's premiere on June 12th along with a handful of her friends who would finally see their friend in action. We talked to her during a break in the action at the 2013 WSOP.
PokerListings: The movie was a long time in the making. What was it like seeing the final product up on the big screen?
Danielle Andersen: It was a really surreal experience. As weird as it sounds, it was like an out of body experience.
It was a really peculiar feeling to be in a theater and watch something so major in my life on the screen and then have 200 people there, most of whom I do not know, watching the same drama unfold.
I was kind of nervous. I wasn’t nervous the first time I watched it by myself, I was more nervous watching it the first time with everybody because you just aren’t sure of people’s reactions.
PL: The cameras followed you around for a long time. How do you feel about how you were portrayed in the movie?
I think that anytime there’s somebody who’s going to be watching a film of themselves, and there’s a camera following them, there are going to be parts captured that you wish weren’t there.
There are some parts of the film that I wish weren’t there but they are and I’m probably the biggest critic of myself.
So something that I look at and think “oh, I wish that wasn’t in the film”, somebody else might not even notice.
For example, there’s one part of the film where I was horrified because I took a beat at LAPC. I mucked my cards and said “f$#% my life”.
I normally really pride myself on being very level headed at the table and I usually don’t show any emotion.
When I saw that in the film, I was really embarrassed and I thought it made me look like a poor sport and a whiny little baby.
But then I was really surprised in the theater when that part happened because everybody laughed. They thought it was hilarious.
I did not see that coming.
PL: You brought a bunch of friends out from Minnesota for the premiere. What was their reaction after they saw the film?
They seemed to love it and most of my friends really have no background whatsoever in poker. They know nothing about it, they know I play it and that’s about the extent of their knowledge.
For them, they commented a lot that it makes a lot more sense now and it filled in some pieces of the puzzle for them.
So I think that’s exciting for everybody because that’s one of the goals of this movie.
For people who aren’t necessarily directly involved in poker to be able to see the film to get a better understanding of the industry and what happened.
PL: This was the first trip to Vegas for a lot of your friends. Did they survive their first time?
Yes, my Minnesota friends survived quite well in Vegas. They loved it and that was another thing that was awesome for me with the whole experience.
After the premier there was an after-party up in a Sky Suite at the Palms.
For high-stakes poker players, something like that isn’t a big deal. It’s probably something they get to experience all the time.
But for small town Minnesota girls, most of whom are teachers and obviously don’t live the same lifestyle as a lot of the people I encounter in poker, it was a really fun experience for them.
So that was really fun for me to be able to share that with my small town Minnesota friends.
PL: Most of your career revolved around online poker before Black Friday. Have you consider relocating to be able to play again?
My husband and I definitely talked about it and what we basically decided was try to make it work in Minnesota. And if it does get to a point where we’ve tried everything and it’s just not going to work, then we’re probably willing to relocate.
But we think it’s only fair to our families that we at least make an effort. If the States do the Opt-In/Opt-Out thing and Minnesota opts out, then we tried and peace out.