There are plenty of actors, celebrities, wanna-bes and hangers-on who "dabble" in poker.
Jennifer Tilly is not one of them.
A role in gambling film Let It Ride way back in 1989 got her into the game and over 20 years later she's as passionate about poker as ever.
She's also proven herself every part a poker player with a WSOP bracelet and WPT title to her credit.
Previously known more for being the girlfriend of poker pro Phil Laak, Tilly has decidedly carved out her own niche as a player now - so much so she'll even appear as herself on The Simpsons tonight in a poker instructional video.
At the recent WSOPE in Cannes our colleague at PokerListings France, Fred Guillemot, was lucky enough to sit down with Tilly for a quick round with a modified Proust Questionnaire.
(If you're not sure what the Proust Questionnaire is, check it out here.)
PokerListings: If you were an animal, what would you be?
Jennifer Tilly: Well, I would be a greyhound, because they're very sleek and very fast.
PL: If you were a country?
JT: If I was a country, I'd probably be Italy because I'm very emotional and gregarious and that's how I see Italians. Like Max Pescatori for example, he's very... sort of flamboyant and enthusiastic.
PL: If you were a city...
JT: If I was a city, I would probably be Paris because it's sort of mysterious, it's fashionista and it's got a little bit of everything.
It's really beautiful, but it's also very urban. It's always changing, it has many different moods.
PL: What about if you were a poker tournament?
JT: Erm... I would probably be the Bellagio, the WPT Championship, the Bellagio Cup.
I would be that tournament because it's a beautiful venue, and it's also the Championship, and it's also...
PL: Las Vegas?
JT: Yeah, it's in Las Vegas... Let's see... If I was a poker tournament... Yes, probably that one, because it's familiar, it's civilized and prestigious.
PL: If you were a playing card...
JT: I would be the Queen of Spades. Not the Queen of Hearts, because the Queen of Hearts is blond and all American, and I think the Queen of Spades is a little more mysterious and... perhaps evil. (laughs)
PL: If you were a color...
JT: A color... If I was a color, it would be aubergine. Aubergine is a beautiful color, but it's also a little bit melancholy and it's got a lot of depth to it.
PL: And if you were another famous man or woman?
JT: Someone I indentify with... Probably Jack Nicholson, because I feel that he's had a crazy life but he's very unapologetic and he seems to be having a good time no matter what's going on in his life and it seems like he is like Edith Piaf, he regrets rien. (laughs)
PL: What about if you were a movie?
JT: If I was a movie... I would probably be... my favourte movie, mon movie favorite... Probably Gone With the Wind.
It's a very tempestuous movie, it has a lot of sweet but it also has a lot of passion, and it has a lot of chapters to it. It's very long ! I want to have a long exciting life.
PL: If you were a sport...
JT: I would probably be baseball. I love baseball because it requires a lot of skills, it requires the hand-eye coordination to hit the ball, running, and it's a team sport, so it requires that you work well with the other players.
So it's not just a solitary sport, you're working with other people, so it's very social. And you can drink beer while you play baseball ! (laughs)
PL: Ah yeah, that's something important in sports...
(laughs) Yes, yes. And spit tobacco! My favourite thing to do!
PL: What's your favourite addiction?
JT: I would have to say, aside from gambling, I think I have a shopping addiction.
I will go out and buy shoes, jewellery and things that I don't even need, just because I love the thrill of when my credit card goes through and then I hear that sort of kaching sound, and then I like to carry the bags home and say "hey, I bought this!"
PL: That must be why you like Paris as well.
PL: What's your favorite fictional character?
JT: I will say the Great Gatsby. He was a very elegant person but he was pretending to be something that he was not.
He suffered from impostor syndrome, so he's very complex. He presented this expensive, fancy exterior to people but underneath he was very insecure and he really wasn't what he appeared to be.
He's a great tragic American character.
PL: The song you like the most?
JT: That would be Edith Piaf's "Je ne regrette rien."
PL: And the sound you like the most?
JT: I like the sound when I win at the slot machine, when this music plays and all these gold coins come tumbling down. That's a very happy sound.
PL: What about the sound you dislike the most?
JT: "I have the nuts," when somebody else says it. When I'm in a poker hand and somebody says "I have the nuts," I don't like that sound.
When I'm all-in, and somebody says they have the nuts.
PL: What is your favorite quality in a man?
JT: The sense of humor. That's why I like Phil, he has a great sense of humor. And he's very unexpected.
PL: And in a woman?
JT: It's also the sense of humor. I think the sense of humor is very important, all my friends have very good senses of humor.
PL: Your main fault?
JT: I'd say my main fault is that I care too much about what other people think of me.
PL: The fault for which you have the most indulgence?
JT: For somebody being late, because I'm always late myself.
PL: What's the word you like the most?
JT: Er... Winner!
PL: And the one you dislike the most? Loser?
Yeah, I guess loser. I don't like that word.
PL: Which superpower would you like to have?
JT: I would love the gift of invisibili... No ! I would love to have X-ray vision so I could see other people's cards!
PL: What do you hate the most?
JT: Liars. Unless they're bluffing in poker. It's ok to lie in poker because it's part of the game.
PL: What other job, beside poker player, could you have done?
JT: Well, I could probably be a writer because I like to write. I write a column for Bluff Magazine and I've written a lot of stories and things.
PL: So maybe you'd like to write poker books too?
JT: One day, yes. I've met with people who want me to write poker books, so maybe one day that's what I'll do.
PL: If you could choose, how would you want to die?
JT: I would like to die peacefully, in my sleep.
PL: And the last one. If God exists, what do you want him to tell you once you're dead?
JT: I would like to hear "Surprise! Reincarnation exists and in the next life you're going to be a fabulous... whatever you want to be, because you were good in this life, so it's the next life you get to be whatever you want."
PL: So what would you like to be reborn as?
JT: The same thing. Actress/poker player. But better-looking. (laughs)
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