Dan Bilzerian is an Internet personality who has been dubbed the “King of Instagram.” He’s gained worldwide notoriety for his beyond lavish lifestyle full of high-stakes poker, half-naked women, huge guns, private jets, and over-the-top vacations. He has utilized social media in order to promote his image and build his Bilzerian empire. But although he has a cult following, there’s no shortage of controversies surrounding Bilzerian — including lots of questions surrounding the source of his money and his all-around morality. From kicking women in the face at nightclubs to having two heart attacks at just 25 years old, this is the highly-debated and often unbelievable life of Dan Bilzerian.
Would you believe he lived in a Mormon community once upon a time?
He’s The Self-Proclaimed “Bill Gates of Poker”
Photo Credit: Wall Street Journal
Dan Bilzerian claims that he has managed to make a fortune of $50 million in a year’s time by playing poker. In a 2014 video interview with ALL IN Magazine, he went so far as to call himself the “Bill Gates of poker – if poker was like a business.” Did Bilzerian somehow manage to revolutionize the game of poker? No. We can’t deny that he is beyond set for life after winning $10.8 million in one night of poker — or that fact that he is financially fine even after flipping a coin for a pile of chips worth $2.3 million and losing. Although people may not question his poker career, they do question where his seemingly endless wealth came from.
The Ambiguous Source Of His Money
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Whenever Dan Bilzerian is asked about where his money originally came from, he always seems to shy away from the question or regurgitate that he’s earned it all gambling. But this seems highly unlikely considering Bilzerian’s father, Paul Bilzerian, earned hundreds of millions of dollars as a corporate raider and shadily strategized for years to protect his assets from a Securities and Exchange and Commissions judgment. He even spent time in prison for securities and tax law violations relating to unsuccessful takeovers of companies in the 1980s. Though young Dan admits that he received (rather questionable) money from his father in a trust, he continuously declines to admit how much he got or how it helped him in his poker career.
“The Suitcase Guy”
Photo Credit: Daily Mirror
Dan Bilzerian was a relatively unknown man in 2007 in both the poker world and on social media. However, that year, he showed up in a Lake Tahoe casino with a briefcase full of cash looking to play some high-stakes poker. Las Vegas-based professional poker player Todd Witteles recalls that he earned the nickname “Suitcase Guy” that night because nobody knew he who was, except that he was hard to miss with a suitcase full of money. Since then, he has moved up to ultra-high-stakes private games with millions of dollars on the line. However, his claim that he has made over $50 million in winnings has been questioned by trading-firm founder Bob Bright who says he’s never heard of anything like that and he’s played regularly with Bilzerian for years.
Bilzerian Used To Be A Loner
Photo Credit: Square Mile
Ever wonder why Dan Bilzerian does what he does? Maybe it’s because he’s trying to fill a void of some kind with countless amounts of sex, drugs, guns, and money? Well, apparently, Bilzerian admitted that he hated high school for a variety of different reasons and that he was extremely unpopular as a teenager. He was more often than not lonely and ridiculed by his classmates for what his father had done. While his dad was in jail, he moved high schools twice and was expelled from both due to his behavior. He also carried this unpopularity into the military trying to live up to his father’s reputation after he had earned a bronze star in Vietnam.
He Lived In A Mormon Community
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After Dan Bilzerian was expelled from his second high school due to his antics and teen angst, there were plans to send him off to a military academy with the hopes of straightening him out. In the nick of time, his father, Paul Bilzerian, was released from prison. Paul bought a new company and moved the family to Utah — specifically, the heart of Mormon country. Unsurprisingly, Dan, the Utah scene, and the Mormon surrounding communities did not get along with one another. So, in an effort to get out of his current situation, he went back to his old ways. Not only did Dan get expelled from school but he was asked to leave the state of Utah entirely.
A Failed Navy Seal
Before making a name for himself as a poker playboy, Bilzerian entered the military and spent four years training to become a Navy Seal. However, after several attempts and 510 days of actual Navy Seal training, he was dropped or “honorably discharged” after verbally insulting one of the administrative officers. Although military officials have said he was discharged for a “safety violation on the shooting range,” Bilzerian claims that he was dropped for no real reason. Reports claim that Bilzerian called one of them a derogatory word just two days before he was expected to graduate. After his four years in the military, he went on to attend Florida State Univesity, where he studied Business and Criminology.
Keep reading to see why his cats might be a sign that he actually has a heart somewhere in there.
Arrested For Guns At A Young Age
Photo Credit: Square Mile
Dan Bilzerian is a known gun advocate and enthusiast. On his social media platforms, he can be seen shooting giant firearms in the desert surrounding by half-naked women cheering him on. He is known for his extensive gun collection (he reportedly own 97 guns and boasts that he has a loaded gun in every room of his Hollywood mansion). But this gun addiction and odd obsession isn’t a recent phenomenon. His senior year of high school, he was arrested and expelled for possession of a machine gun on school property. Clearly, that experience didn’t turn him off of guns by any means.
Incidents Hurting Women
In 2014, a video of Dan Bilzerian went viral after he threw adult film star Janice Griffith off of a roof into a pool for a shoot for Hustler magazine. The stunt ended with Griffith breaking her foot on the edge of the pool and filing a lawsuit against Bilzerian and Hustler. She claims that the roof toss was Bilzerian and Hustler‘s idea and that it was unsafe from the start. Bilzerian’s lawyers responded with a less than respectful response to Griffiths lawsuit. Shockingly enough, that wasn’t the first lawsuit that Bilzerian was faced with that week. Just a few days later he was sued for kicking model Vanessa Castano in the face at LIV nightclub in Miami. Bilzerian claims that he was just protecting the woman he was with at the time.
Arrested At LAX
On December 9, 2014, Dan Bilzerian was arrested at the Los Angeles International Airport for allegedly possessing the equipment necessary to manufacture bombs. He was arrested by the LAPD and booked at the Pacific Division around 10 p.m. that night. Unsurprisingly, he was released from LAPD on the day of his arrest after the charges were dropped but he was scheduled to be arraigned in January 2015 in Clark County, Nevada. He pleaded no contest to a misdemeanor charge of negligently failing to extinguish a fire in the open and was fined $17,231.50. Of course, Bilzerian managed to shake the whole thing off and posted a picture after being released from jail in his private jet between two women with the caption “Jail…Let’s not do that again.”
If you can tell by his Instagram posts @danbilzerian, he makes it very well-known that he’s constantly surrounded by attractive women. This is one of his main strategies on the Internet to show the world that he’s having a “good time” and attempting to prove to everyone that he’s the epitome of a ladies man. He’s well-known on Instagram for taking pictures of him living a luxurious life with countless girls in bikinis in the background. He’s also not shy about discussing his sexual escapades claiming that he’s had intercourse with thousands of women and even had intercourse with 16 different women in a period of 12 days. However, his depiction of women has also brought some serious heat, with people labeling him as misogynistic, disgusting, and a bad role model for young men.
Two Heart Attacks When He Was 25
Dan Bilzerian had a shocking moment of vulnerability when he experienced two heart attacks at the young age of 25. As the story goes, during a five-day snowboarding vacation with his fraternity brothers — packed with snowboarding, drinking, girls, copious amounts of cocaine, ecstasy, gambling, and 200 milligrams of Viagara — Bilzerian experienced a heart attack. While recuperating in the hospital from the first heart attack, he experienced another only 12 hours later. Luckily for him, he recovered fully from the first two heart attacks in two weeks. However, his heart gave out again in 2011, while flying between Maui and Las Vegas, twice in three days playing an around-the-clock tournament. Doctors then diagnosed him with a pulmonary embolism.
Did you know Dan Bilzerian is a semi-successful actor?
His Cat Is A Social Media Star Too
If you didn’t already know, Dan Bilzerian has a cat that he holds dear to his heart named Smushball. For most people, Bilzerian’s affection towards his cat is the only proof that the “King of Instagram” might have a heart somewhere beneath all of the money, guns, and women. Smushball is a three-legged Persian Doll Face cat with her own Instagram page that has almost half a million followers. Bilzerian frequently posts pictures of him and the cat on his own page as well as the cat’s page. Why do so many people want to follow Dan Bilzerian’s cat? We don’t think we’ll ever know. He also has two goats, but they don’t have an Instagram. That’s reserved for Smushball.
He Was In Las Vegas During The 2017 Shooting
Photo Credit: TMZ
Dan Bilzerian was present during the mass shooting in Las Vegas on October 1, 2017. He even posted a video on social media during the commotion of him running away from the action. This received a lot of backlash from Marine Veterans such as Medal of Honor recipient Dakota Myers who said, “This is why children shouldn’t classify their heroes by their followers or their photos…Always playing operator dress up. A woman just got shot in the head and you’re running away filming.” In the video, Bilzerian can also be seen asking police officers for a gun but is denied for obvious reasons.
He Sued The Film Lone Survivor
Just when you thought Dan Bilzerian had achieved all he could possibly want, he showed everyone that he wasn’t satisfied just yet. He found a second career as an actor as well as a stuntman. He worked as stunt double for Gerard Butler on Olympus Has Fallen and also appeared in the film The Equalizer with Denzel Washington, and The Other Women. Although it was all going well, he had issues with Hollywood when it came to the film Lone Survivor with Mark Whalberg. Bilzerian invested $1 million into the film in exchange for 80 words of dialogue and eight minutes of screen time. However, when the producers decided to cut his role to one line he filed a $1.25 million lawsuit against the company but eventually dropped it after making $1.5 million from the movie.
A Few Of His favorite Toys
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With Dan Bilzerian’s ego and all of that money, you know that he has some very big and very nice toys to play around with. He has a high-end sports car collection consisting of a 1965 Shelby Cobra, Lamborghini Aventador, Bently GT Continental, and many more. Of course, these all have a license plate with phrases like “SUCK IT” and “MR GOAT” proudly on the back. Along with his car collection, he also owns a private jet, yacht, helicopter, snowmobiles, quads, a Humvee, and just about anything with a motor that you can get your hands on. He can be seen riding them on his social media platforms while a flock of women follows behind.
He’s A Race Car Enthusiast
Aside from loving cars and owning them, Dan Bilzerian also likes to race them. In 2011, he made $400,000 in a drag race against fellow car enthusiast and Supreme Court Litigator, Tom Goldstein. Goldstein drove his 2011 Ferarri 458 Italia while Dan drove his customized 1965 Shelby 427 Cobra in a quarter mile drag race. Dan won the race with a time of 10.47 seconds and a top speed of 132.88 miles per hour. Goldstein had a time of 11.54 seconds with a top speed of 121.97 miles. This was a big win for Bilzerian because he proved that he wasn’t just all talk when it came to his cars.
The Dan Bilzerian Lifestyle Simulator
Dan Bilzerian found another way to make even more money as well as promote his lavish lifestyle. He recently came out with the game “Blitz Poker,” which is an app that offers an authentic Texas Hold ‘Em experience with different game options and preferences. If poker isn’t your thing, the game also comes with a “Lifestyle Simulator” that allows to live like Dan Bilzerian and take part in his many crazy activities through mini-games like skeet shooting drones in the desert, undoing bras, and aiming dollars at strippers’ underwear. Wonderful. If you’re super desperate to get a taste of Bilzerian’s life, you might want to start here.
Ok, but why does Dan Bilzerian have two goats?
The Story Of The Goats
In 2013, Dan Bilzerian invested $2,000 in his personal friend and fellow poker player Jay Farber, also known as “Panda.” Farber ended up finishing second in the 2013 WSOP Main Event and won $5.1 million in which he gave Dan $1 million. Dan and him proceded to go on vacation together with more than enough women and partying to last them a lifetime. In order to thank Bilzerian for his investment and the vacation, Farber gifted him with a goat. Bilzerian liked the gift but felt that his goat needed a friend so he went and bought another one for himself. Now he has two goats which are frequently featured on his social media pages.
He Needs More Than One Personal Chef
In an interview with Howard Stern, Dan Bilzerian admitted that he needs three separate personal chefs in order to satisfy his food needs. He said that every time he had just one personal chef they got too burnt out from all of his demands. So, in order to fix the problem, he hired three different chefs so they can rotate throughout the day. Each of the chefs works 12-hour shifts at his homes in both Hollywood and Las Vegas. Along with his chefs, he also has a staff of 20 employees that work directly for him, including three assistants.
He Was Forced To Pay Back Some Of His Winnings
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In November 2011, Dan Bilzerian (along with 10 others including actors Toby McGuire, Nick Cassavetes, and Gabe Kaplan) were asked to pay back their winnings that they had won against Ponzi scheme operator Bradley Ruderman. They were asked to pay after Ruderman was sentenced to prison in order to help pay back money owed to the victims that Ruderman had stolen from over the course of his career. Of course, this didn’t phase him at all or make him question the kind of people he was gambling large sums of money with. The show must go on as Bilzerian would say.