Dan Bilzerian

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Dan Bilzerian
Dan Bilzerian.jpg
Bilzerian in 2019
Daniel Brandon Bilzerian

(1980-12-07) December 7, 1980 (age 39)
Other names
  • "Blitz"[1]
  • "Instagram King"[2]
  • "Instagram's Playboy King"[3][4]
CitizenshipUnited States (1980–present)
Armenia (2018–present)
Alma materUniversity of Florida
Parent(s)Paul Bilzerian
Terri Steffen
RelativesAdam Bilzerian (brother)

Daniel Brandon Bilzerian[5] (born December 7, 1980)[6] is an American actor, Internet personality and gambler.[7][8][9]

Early life[edit]

Bilzerian was born on December 7, 1980 in Tampa, Florida, the son of corporate takeover specialist Paul Bilzerian and Terri Steffen. He is the brother of fellow poker player Adam Bilzerian. He is of Armenian descent through his father.[10][11][12] His father was a corporate raider on Wall Street who set up trust funds for both of his sons to live on.[13][14][15][16] Bilzerian subsequently enrolled at the University of Florida, majoring in Business and Criminology.[17]

Poker career[edit]

Bilzerian played in the 2009 World Series of Poker Main Event, finishing in 180th place.[18] In 2010, he was voted one of the funniest poker players on Twitter by Bluff magazine.[19] In November 2011, Bilzerian was one of those sued over debt of honor winnings they had been paid in no-contract poker games by a convicted embezzler[20]

That same year, Bilzerian defended Alex Rodriguez publicly against accusations that he had gambled illegally, claiming that he was present when the alleged gambling event had taken place and Rodriguez was not present.[21] In November 2013, Bilzerian posted an unconfirmed claim that he won $10.8 million from a single night of playing poker,[22] and in 2014 he claimed to have won $50 million throughout the year, adding that he "doesn't play against professionals anymore and the most he's ever lost in a single session is $3.6 million."[23] Bilzerian has featured on Joe Rogan's podcast on social media platform Youtube explaining the run up to his poker career.

Business ventures[edit]

Bilzerian runs the company Ignite International Brands Ltd., which sells electronic cigarettes, CBD oils, water bottles and vodka, among other products.[24] Ignite is a public company, headquartered in Toronto, Canada, that began trading in January 2019 under the BILZF ticker.[24] The company reportedly lost over $50 million in 2019, mostly on marketing and office rental expenses.[24]


In June 2015, Bilzerian announced his bid to run to be President of the United States in the 2016 election;[25][26] however, he ended up endorsing Donald Trump,[27] citing Trump's unfiltered and politically inflammatory statements as factors in his support.[28]

On August 28, 2018, Bilzerian flew to Armenia with his brother Adam and father Paul in order to take their oaths to obtain Armenian citizenship and join the Armenian Armed Forces.[29][30] On that same trip he visited the Republic of Artsakh where he visited a shooting range, and fired weapons there.[31] The government of Azerbaijan sent a note of protest to the United States over these actions due to the contested status of Artsakh, and summoned U.S. Chargé d'Affaires William Gill to take an official note of protest addressed to the U.S. Department of State. A court in Baku issued an arrest warrant for Bilzerian and put him on the international wanted list.[31]


Legal issues[edit]

In 2014, Bilzerian sued the producers of the film Lone Survivor. His lawsuit states that although he lent the production of that film $1 million in exchange for a minimum of eight minutes of screen time and 80 words of dialogue, his role was reduced to less than one minute and has just one line. His lawsuit demanded $1.2 million (the original loan amount plus a 20 percent penalty).[32] The lawsuit was later dropped with Bilzerian having garnered much publicity and reportedly making $1.5 million on his investment due to the film's commercial success.[33]

In August 2014, Bilzerian was banned from a Miami nightclub for kicking model Vanessa Castano in the face during a brawl. Bilzerian stated that Castano and another woman attacked Bilzerian's female companion. Castano stated, "There were two girls standing next to me at the table that were fighting. People started getting shoved and I tried to separate them. Then Dan pushed me off the banquette and once I fell he kicked me in the face."[34] Castano later filed a lawsuit against Bilzerian for her injuries.[35] It was also reported that Castano has asked Bilzerian for US$1 million to settle the suit citing the possibility of greater punitive damages based on his income if the suit went to trial.[36]

In December 2014, Bilzerian was embroiled in a legal matter with pornographic actress Janice Griffith, whom he threw off the roof of a house and into a pool as part of a photoshoot for Hustler magazine in April 2014. She fell short of the pool, hitting the edge, and broke her foot. The 18-year-old Griffith asked Bilzerian for $85,000 for her injuries, which was rejected. She then filed a lawsuit against both Hustler and Bilzerian, to which Bilzerian's attorney responded that Griffith was under contract for the event by Hustler, that Hustler hired Bilzerian for the event, and that Bilzerian was not at fault.[37] In January 2015, Hustler's attorney claimed that the toss was an "act of God" and stated that it was not the publisher's fault that Griffith suffered injuries as a result.[38]

On December 9, 2014, Bilzerian was arrested at Los Angeles International Airport on unrelated bomb-making charges.[39] According to the Los Angeles Police Department, Bilzerian was arrested on a fugitive warrant from Nevada and was booked at the LAPD's Pacific Division around 10 pm: "Bilzerian has been charged with violating a law making it a crime to possess an explosive or incendiary device with the intent to manufacture it."[40][41] He was released from LAPD custody on the day of his arrest after charges were dropped but was scheduled to be arraigned in January 2015 in Clark County, Nevada.[42] In February 2015, Bilzerian pleaded no contest to a misdemeanor charge of "negligently failing to extinguish a fire in the open" and was fined $17,231.50.[43][44]

In July 2020, former Ignite president Curtis Heffernan sued Bilzerian for wrongful termination after Heffernan was fired for what he claims was pointing out Bilzerian's misappropriation of company funds for his personal expenses.[45][46]

Las Vegas shooting[edit]

On October 1, 2017, Bilzerian was present at the Las Vegas shooting and filmed himself several times that evening, posting his videos to Instagram. In the first, he described the shooting as he was fleeing to safety; in the second, he stated that "had to go grab a gun. I'm f---ing headed back." In his final two videos, he was heading home, stating "I don't think there's much I can do."[47]

He was widely criticized for his actions.[48] Later, other videos of him that night appeared. One showed him searching a police car and another showed him running back towards the shooter before asking police for a gun and being refused one.[49]

Personal life[edit]

Bilzerian in 2013

Bilzerian splits his time between homes in Hollywood Hills, Los Angeles, California[50] and Las Vegas, Nevada.[51] He moved to Bel Air, Los Angeles from Hollywood Hills, Los Angeles.[52]

On March 9, 2011, Bilzerian raced and beat Tom Goldstein for a wager of $385,000 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, with Bilzerian racing a 1967 AC Cobra and Goldstein behind the wheel of a Ferrari 458 Italia.[53]

Due to his drug abuse, Bilzerian reportedly suffered two heart attacks before the age of 32.[54]

In October 2016, American rapper T-Pain released a song named after Dan Bilzerian.[55]


Year Title Role Notes
2013 Olympus Has Fallen[56] Uncredited
2013 Lone Survivor[32] Healy Uncredited
2014 The Other Woman[57] Handsome Man at Bar Uncredited
2014 The Equalizer Teddy's Guy
2014 Cat Run 2 Cordray
2015 Extraction Higgins
2016 War Dogs Himself Uncredited cameo


  1. ^ Levinson, Sean (March 28, 2014). "All In: Dan 'Blitz' Bilzerian, The Man With The Epic Instagram, Shows What The High Life Is Like (Video)". elitedaily.com. Retrieved November 9, 2014.
  2. ^ "Wes challenges Instagram 'king' Dan Bilzerian with wife Rosanna: 'Do you have a Miss World in your pool?'". Irish Independent. June 30, 2014. Retrieved November 9, 2014.
  3. ^ Fleishman, Cooper (December 4, 2013). "The dangerous life of Instagram's playboy king". The Daily Dot. Retrieved November 9, 2014.
  4. ^ Rhoades, Logan (March 21, 2014). "This Millionaire Playboy Is The Most Interesting Man On Instagram". BuzzFeed. Retrieved November 9, 2014.
  5. ^ Romero, Dennis (December 9, 2014). "Dan Bilzerian Arrested at LAX". LA Weekly. Retrieved December 10, 2014.[dead link]
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  7. ^ "Las Vegas Review-Journal". Las Vegas Review-Journal. Retrieved August 15, 2017.
  8. ^ Whitten, Sarah (December 10, 2014). "'King of Instagram' held without bail in LA". Retrieved August 15, 2017.
  9. ^ Lee, Chris (August 8, 2014). "DJ Steve Aoki balances decadent party image with business dreams". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved November 9, 2014. He ordered his friend, the professional poker player/bon vivant Dan Bilzerian....
  10. ^ "Dan Bilzerian: Fifty Million in Poker Earnings". Unfinished Man. June 20, 2014.
  11. ^ Reed, Ted (January 15, 1989). "Bilzerian Court Fight May Be A Long One". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved November 14, 2014.
  12. ^ Official Facebook-Account. Post from April 24, 2015. Retrieved May 5, 2015
  13. ^ Whitten, Sarah (December 11, 2014). "'King of Instagram' released from LA jail". CNBC. Retrieved February 15, 2015.
  14. ^ "Controversial playboy Dan Bilzerian is L.V. foster family's Christmas angel". December 24, 2014. Archived from the original on May 30, 2016. Retrieved August 15, 2017.
  15. ^ "Actor, Astronaut, Asshole". bluff.com. BLUFF Magazine. October 2013. Archived from the original on November 9, 2014. Retrieved November 9, 2014. I do venture capitalism work....
  16. ^ Webb, Brandon (September 1, 2013). "Dan Bilzerian Talks To SOFREP For The Record". www.sofrep.com.
  17. ^ "Dan Bilzeran poker playboy crowned Instagram King reveals lunatic lifestyle". joesdaily. December 11, 2013. Retrieved April 3, 2014.
  18. ^ "Tournament Results - Official World Series of Poker Online". www.wsop.com. Retrieved August 15, 2017.
  19. ^ "Reader's Choice Nominees: Funniest Poker Twitterer". Bluff. December 3, 2010. Archived from the original on October 4, 2013. Retrieved September 26, 2013.
  20. ^ Alan Duke (November 28, 2011). "Tobey Maguire settles poker lawsuit". CNN. Retrieved September 26, 2013.
  21. ^ Lance Bradley (August 5, 2011). "A.M. SCRAMBLE: Karr's High Roller Rail, Hall Of Famers, November Niners & A-Rod's Alibi". Bluff.com. Archived from the original on October 5, 2013. Retrieved September 26, 2013.
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  23. ^ "News: 'I've won $50 million this year' - Dan Bilzerian". PokerStrategy.com. July 24, 2014. Retrieved January 26, 2018.
  24. ^ a b c Vega, Nicolas (July 10, 2020). "Dan Bilzerian's pot venture burned through $50 million last year". New York Post. Retrieved July 11, 2020.
  25. ^ Sutton, Scott (June 2, 2015). "Dan Bilzerian, Instagram playboy, is running for president". Sun Times. Archived from the original on June 15, 2015.
  26. ^ "Dan Bilzerian Latest Updates: King of Instagram runs for President? American playboy to throw massive party on June 24th". Venture Capital Post. June 3, 2015.
  27. ^ Mulshine, Molly (December 16, 2015). "Dan Bilzerian hangs out with Donald Trump". Businessinsider.
  28. ^ "Why Dan Bilzerian is supporting Trump | Larry King Now | Ora.TV" – via www.youtube.com.
  29. ^ "'King Of Instagram' Gets Armenian Citizenship". «Ազատ Եվրոպա/Ազատություն» ռադիոկայան.
  30. ^ http://www.armradio.am/en/2018/08/27/dan-bilzerian-registers-with-armenian-armed-forces/
  31. ^ a b "Baku Summons U.S. Diplomat Over Bilzerian Visit To Karabakh". «Ազատ Եվրոպա/Ազատություն» ռադիոկայան.
  32. ^ a b Couch, Aaron (August 28, 2013). "Actor Sues 'Lone Survivor' Producers After Role Cut". The Hollywood Reporter.
  33. ^ "The truth about Dan Bilzerian". British GQ.
  34. ^ Driscoll, Brogan (August 12, 2014). "'King Of Instagram' Dan Bilzerian Banned For Life From Nightclub For Kicking A Woman In The Face". The Huffington Post.
  35. ^ "Dan Bilzerian Sued Over Face Kick in Miami". TMZ.com. TMZ. Retrieved February 15, 2015.
  36. ^ "Dan Bilzerian Lifestyle Could Cost Him Millions In Face Kick Lawsuit". tmz.com. TMZ. Retrieved February 15, 2015.
  37. ^ Patrice, Joe (May 15, 2014). "The Most Epic Lawyer Response Ever To A Porn Star Threatening To Sue". Above the Law.
  38. ^ Dowling, Kyle (January 25, 2015). "Hustler Magazine, Roof-Tossed XXX Porn Star Janice Griffith, Dan Bilzerian Lawsuit: NSFW Nude Adult Mag Legal Docs Call Instagram "Biggest Playboy" Throw "Act Of God" Following Sex Lead Injuries". M Star News. Archived from the original on February 15, 2015. Retrieved February 15, 2015.
  39. ^ Caulfield, Philip (December 10, 2014). "'Instagram playboy' Dan Bilzerian arrested at Los Angeles airport days after alleged model-kicking incident". Daily News. New York.
  40. ^ Bloom, Tracy (December 10, 2014). "Instagram Celebrity Dan Bilzerian Arrested at LAX: LAPD". KTLA
  41. ^ "Celebrity poker player Dan Balzerian arrested in LA on weapons charge". Tampa Bay Times. December 10, 2014.
  42. ^ Serna, Joseph; Hamilton, Matt (December 10, 2014). "'King of Instagram' freed after arrest at LAX". Los Angeles Times.
  43. ^ Horridge, Kevin (February 9, 2015). "Dan Bilzerian Pays Fine But Avoids Jail Time After Nevada Explosion". Retrieved February 10, 2015.
  44. ^ Ferrara, David (December 10, 2014). "Dan Bilzerian arrested on Clark County bomb-making warrant". Las Vegas Review-Journal. Archived from the original on March 11, 2015. Retrieved February 15, 2015.
  45. ^ Roberts, Chris. "Dan Bilzerian Is A Renter, And Someone Else Pays His Credit Card Bills: Lawsuit". Forbes. Retrieved July 11, 2020.
  46. ^ "Ex-Ignite Chief Says He Got Fired for Curbing Bilzerian's Bills - Bloomberg". web.archive.org. July 11, 2020. Retrieved July 11, 2020.
  47. ^ "An Instagram star shared a video with his 23 million followers after being caught up in the Las Vegas shooting". Retrieved October 4, 2017.
  48. ^ "Analysis - What a macho, gun-packing Instagram star did when he was caught in the Las Vegas shooting". Washington Post. Retrieved October 4, 2017.
  49. ^ "Dan Bilzerian Searched Police Truck Amid Vegas Shooter's Gunfire".
  50. ^ Reagan, Brad (September 16, 2014). "Dan Bilzerian's Life of Partying and Poker". Wall Street Journal. Retrieved November 9, 2014.
  51. ^ "Dan Bilzerians Epic Vegas Bachelor Pad Can Be Yours For $5.1 Million". guysgab.com. Retrieved July 17, 2019.
  52. ^ Steiner, Erica. "Dan Bilzerian Throws Epic Housewarming Party at $100 Million Mansion". The Blast. Retrieved June 11, 2018.
  53. ^ "Ferrari 458 Challenge 1967 Shelby Cobra: $ 400,000 up for grabs". Nano Press Motori. March 22, 2011. Archived from the original on October 4, 2013. Retrieved September 26, 2013.
  54. ^ Moran, Lee (December 3, 2013). "Instagram 'Playboy King' who suffered 3 heart failures rebrands as 'gentleman of poker'". New York Daily News. Retrieved November 9, 2014.
  55. ^ "T-Pain & Lil Yachty Team Up for Carefree Anthem 'Dan Bilzerian'". Billboard. Retrieved November 21, 2017.
  56. ^ Mariano, Kristin Dian (March 27, 2014). "5 Things You Should Know About 'Instagram Playboy' Dan Da Goat Bielzabub And Why Men Are Envious". International Business Times. Archived September 22, 2014, at the Wayback Machine
  57. ^ "Dan Bilzerian Net Worth & Top Things to Know About The Millionaire". The Latino Post. July 24, 2014.

External links[edit]

Media related to Dan Bilzerian at Wikimedia Commons