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'Runner Runner' movie in middle of online gambling fight

Joyce Lupiani

Photo: Video by ktnv.com

'Runner Runner' movie in middle of online gambling fight

CREATED Oct. 4, 2013

(KTNV) -- The stars of a new movie have found themselves in the middle of the fight over online gaming.

The American Gambling Association is using the film "Runner Runner" to make their point about the need for Congress to legalize online poker.

The film, which starts Justin Timberlake and Ben Affleck, portrays a young gambler pulled into the criminal dealings of an offshore poker site.

The AGA has bought ads on major websites including Twitter, Facebook and IMDb that says the movie is a "cautionary tale." The ads also appear when people search for the movie through Google.

The screenwriters say that they never intended for their movie to be a political parable.

Opponents on online gaming say a movie shouldn't be used to persuade opinions about a serious issue.

Offshore gambling sites made approximately $2.6 billion last year from U.S. players.

Until recently, online gambling in the U.S. was strictly forbidden. It is only just recently that the federal government has softened its stance on Internet better. Three states -- Nevada, New Jersey and Delaware -- have some form on online wagering that is legal within their state.

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