21 Questions with Hollywood Dave Stann

The one and only Bad Boy of Black Jack

Posted by Miss Monkay

4.) At what age did you join Mensa and do you take advantage of the Hertz discount perk offered to members?
5.) Seriously, have you been to a Mensa gathering?
6.) It is said that over 9000 members of Mensa speak 3 languages, including English. The website also says that 472 are interested in UFOs, 358 are coin collectors, 1,949 are into golf, 1,583 love sci-fi movies. Do you fall into any of those categories?

DS: Ah, the requisite MENSA reference. I gotta tellya, not to bash MENSA or anything, but I have always found it means more to others than it ever did to me. My parents (both Mensans as well) had me tested when I was a teen, and would bring me to meetings about rocket science or social getherings about mututal interests in Scrabble or chess or whatnot, but for some reason it just never stuck with me.

Don't get me wrong, i was always getting straight A's and B's, in all the Honors and AP classes, doing the extra work and extracurricular activities (president of my Speech & Debate club, etc) but when it came time to my own social time -- hanging out with a bunch of Mensans was never my idea of a good time. I was acting in school plays, hanging out with the goth kids down at the coffeehouse, dying my hair purple, going to Skinny Puppy and Depeche Mode concerts. You get the idea.

7.) Moving on here, what came first, blackjack or acting?

DS: Acting comes first. Always has. The career comes first before family, friends, lovers, even myself. If you want to be successful in this business called show, it has got to consume you. In fact, the original reason i started counting cards and making a living playing blackjack professionally is because i was sick of waiting tables and tending bar, but needed a flexible job that could pay my bills while i was paying my dues as a young actor. I figured i was smart enough & had a natural affinity for games of skill (you don't want to play me in chess or gin rummy), so i was gonna figure out this card counting thing. Well, it really consumed me for several years & i was in Vegas constantly, burning the felts and really living the gambler's life. Auditions & jobs here in LA came first, but everything else was devoted to blackjack. Interesting how now my two loves for cards and acting have combined -- and further proof that if you truly put your mind to something, you can't help but succeed.

8.) If you had to choose between competing at the final table of the World Series of Poker or being at the Oscars on the evening you are nominated for the best actor award, which would you choose?

DS: As tempting as the World Series of Poker is (in fact, despite making my gambling bones & recognition in the world of blackjack, i now almost exclusively play no limit hold'em poker tournaments & the only reason i did not compete in this year's WSOP is because we were shooting the first season of 'Celebrity Blackjack' the same week), my heart and soul will always be in art & acting. To be nominated for a best actor Oscar would be one of the greatest achievements in my life, and something not to be missed.

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Comments & Discussion

Dave is so awesome! I hope he wins WSOB and doesn't come in 2nd like last time...I'll be cheering for ya!

I wish dave had punched meatloaf out on Celebrity Blackjack

Excellent! Thanks for the great interview!

thank you so much for this interview. v. fun and entertaining.

Dave, I Love you!!!! I watch you every chance I get...King Of Vegas was AWESOME!!! <3<3<3

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