Throughout movie history, there have been some truly iconic casino scenes. To learn about the best ones from the most popular movies, check out the list in this article.

How Casinos Came to Dominate Modern Culture and Film

Europe witnessed a major casino boom in the late 19th century. Then, during the first quarter of the 20th century, casinos started to become popular throughout the US and the rest of the world more broadly. This was a direct result of many countries and states legalizing gambling. Take Nevada, a US state that legalized gambling in 1931
However, it was Las Vegas that eventually became known as the ‘casino capital of the world’ thanks to its famous Las Vegas Strip. In particular, Las Vegas is credited for inspiring some of the amazing casino movies and scenes that have been shot during the 20th and 21st centuries. Countless casino scenes have been filmed directly in Las Vegas, which has made hundreds of millions of dollars from location budgets.

In 2023, casinos will continue to be popular in both US and world cultures. Unsurprisingly, playing in an online casino in the US has become many people’s preferred way to gamble these days, as players can enjoy all their favorite casino games using a PC, tablet, or smartphone. Despite the rise of online casinos, though, land-based casinos continue to play a massive role in modern cinema.

Now, let’s take a closer look at the most popular movies to feature casino scenes:

The Hangover (2009)

When people think of casinos in movies, The Hangover is usually the first ‘big screen’ movie that comes to mind.

In The Hangover, ‘The Wolfpack’ travel to Las Vegas for a bachelor party. After a night of partying in Las Vegas, they lose their best friend, Doug, as well as their memories, which means they have to retrace their steps in order to find where he is.

At one point in the movie, The Wolfpack plays blackjack in Caesar’s Palace casino. This is widely regarded as one of the highlights of the movie and eventually sees Alan win $82,400 by illegally counting cards.

Over a decade later, thousands of tourists travel to Las Vegas each year dressed as Alan, Phil, and Stu. That’s how you know a movie has become truly iconic.

Dr. No (1963)

In Dr. No, the audience meets James Bond for the first time.

How? The scene is simple: Bond is playing blackjack in the Le Cercle, Les Ambassadeurs Club, London. He then delivers the famous “Bond, James Bond” line to Sylvia Trench after winning one of the games. It’s a beautifully captured moment that also signified how popular casinos were becoming in entertainment culture during the 1960s.

Casino Royale (2006)

Casino Royale sees James Bond face Le Chiffre in a high-stakes game of poker. During the game, Bond nearly dies and has to try and resuscitate himself outside in a car. He then returns to the casino to win the game of poker and wins $120 million.