Gambling on Da Vinci

In my admittedly cursory research into the life and habits of Leonardo DaVinci while writing Roll the Bones, I was unable to find anything on his gambling proclivities. With The Da Vinci Code selling 40 million copies so far, don’t think that I wasn’t trying my best for some tie-in. “Hitler’s casino” made the cut, out of deference to the History Channel, after all (Here’s a game: take any noun, stick “Hitler’s” in front of it, and you’ve got a readymade History Channel show.)

But all I was able to find was that Da Vinci’s father borrowed money from Girolamo Cardano at some point–or maybe it was the other way around. So “Da Vinci’s roll” didn’t make it into Roll the Bones. But today I’ve found a story that’s even more interesting than the study linking DNA damage to secondhand casino smoke (as a former casino employee, I’m not exactly disinterested). It’s about gambling on The Da Vinci Code–not the new movie’s plot (which is well known by now), but it’s performance at the box office. from

The Da Vinci Code movie even has online gambling circles guessing. Everyone’s betting on just how many millions The Code will make in its opening weekend! And if the sweeping popularity of Dan Brown’s breakthrough novel is anything to go by, this is going to be one bet that shouldn’t be hard to win for even amateur internet gamblers. Opening this Friday (May 19), The Da Vinci Code film will open simultaneously in hundreds of countries and is set to smash box office records across the globe by Saturday night.

But as obvious a blockbuster as The Da Vinci Code will be this weekend, just how much of a winner the movie turns out to be is the million dollar question at The online gambling site is laying odds and taking bets on the total gross revenue generated from combined ticket sales across the USA starting on Friday night.

The Da Vinci Code odds for gross revenues in the USA over its opening weekend (19 May to 21 May 2006) are:

$0 to $35 Million – 50:1
$35.1 to $50 Million – 25:1
$50.1 to $65 Million – 5:1
$65.1 to $80 Million – 5:2
$80.1 to $90 Million – 2:1
$90.1 to $100 Million – 5:2
$100.1 to $110 Million – 4:1
$110.1 to $120 Million – 7:1
$120.1 to $130 Million – 10:1
$130.1 Million or More – 20:1

Da Vinci Code movie launches online gambling mystery

This more more a hard sell for the sportsbook in question than a bona fide news story, but I find it interesting because it represents the intersection of two worlds: movie box office buffs and online gamblers. The Internet has given both groups a real voice. Once, you would have had to have been somehow invovled in the movie industry to know or even care about box office grosses. Now, following movies’ financial performance is a hobby for many. Ditto with betting on crazy props like this one. Technology never ceases to astound.

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