The World Poker Tour is the most popular TV show about poker. The viewers get to watch the hole cards of the players, therefore follow the action from the player’s perspective.
A major part of the attraction is the high quality of the poker that is filmed. All tournaments are high buy-in tournaments and the players are some of the best players in the world.
But the tournaments are open for anyone to enter so occasionally an amateur reaches the final table and battles it out against the poker professionals.
The first episode of the World Poker Tour was recorded at the Bellagio in Las Vegas in 2002. The tournament was The Diamond World Poker Classic and it had 146 entrants that all paid an entrance fee of $10,000 each.
From that point it just went on, season 1 contained another 12 episodes recorded at major tournaments. Most of them around the United States except three recorded in the Caribbean, and one in France.
The tournaments were held between June 2002 and April 2003. The last event of the season was held at the Bellagio where it all started. The last event of the season is called the World Poker Tour Championship and costs $25,000 to enter. This is one of the most prestigious tournaments in the world to win. In season 3 the tour consisted of 16 events in total.
Some extra episodes have been added due to the high popularity of the show, for example have charity free-rolls with Hollywood celebrities been held and also have tournaments with former winners playing each other been shown on TV. In 2004 a new branch started of the WPT and it is called the Professional Poker Tour. The PPT is an invitational tour where poker professionals only are invited to play without having to pay a buy-in.