“Once in a generation”: the Columbus casino project begins to take shape | State and Area News

Flashing lights, sirens, the buzz of conversation and the thrill of placing a bet are all part of the appeal of casinos. While gambling has been around for centuries, casinos started popping up in Italy in the 17th century. The Casino di Venezia, opened in 1638 in Venice, is the the oldest casino in the world, although it was originally known as the Saint Moses Theater. It offered guests the opportunity to perform during the intermissions of the theater production.

In the 19th century, casinos appeared all over Europe. In the United States, cities like Las Vegas and Reno in Nevada, and Atlantic City in New Jersey, have become known for their casinos and infamous ties to organized crime. Gambling itself had a reputation as a vice that could lead to other bad habits.

Hollywood’s obsession with casinos also has a long history. The classic film “Casablanca” features a casino that is part of Rick Blaine’s nightclub. Over the next few decades, directors like Robert Altman, Martin Scorsese and Steven Soderbergh dabbled in films about the lure of gambling and casinos that supported the lifestyle.

OLBG researched the history of on-screen casinos and compiled a list of 20 of the best casino movies. To be included, films had to have significant scenes set in a casino, and the film had to score at least a 6.0 on IMDb or a 65 on Metacritic.

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