The Billy Walters Movie; The Rags to Riches Story that Needs to be Told on the Big Screen

4 min

The Billy Walter’s story is not a super well known one but is one of those dramatic life stories that should be turned into a movie. His story has many twists and turns in it and is perfect for the big screen. His true-life story is greater than fiction and should be turned into a screenplay. The Billy Walter’s story truly is an American success and should be told to the world. The story is still unfolding but his life seems so unreal that it is hard to believe that it is all true.

Spoiler alert, Billy Walters is currently being incarcerated at the Pensacola Federal Prison Camp in the Florida panhandle. For a man who started life out with nothing, he worked his way up to multi-millionaire status and ultimately ended up in prison. Despite government misconduct, Walters still sits in prison to this day and despite an appeal with ample evidence to prove misconduct, he is scheduled for release in 2022.

Billy Walters was born in July in 1946 and was raised by his grandmother in a home with no running water or indoor plumbing. His father died when Walters was almost two years old and soon after his father’s death, his mother left both him and his two sisters with his grandmother. His mother was an alcoholic who struggled deeply after the death of his father. When she left, Walters knew that his life was going to change even more dramatically than it already had.

Since a young age, Billy Walters had an outstanding work ethic. He has always credited his grandmother for instilling this strong work ethic in him from a very young age. His grandmother, in order to support her grandchildren, had worked two jobs cleaning dishes and cleaning houses. Walters saw how much she struggled and he wanted to do what he could to help. When most children were running around the neighborhood, riding bikes or playing with their toys, Walters started his own business.

At the very young age of just seven years old, Walters was able to obtain a bank loan for forty dollars to start his own grass cutting business. With that forty dollars, he purchased a power lawnmower. After two years of running a fairly successful lawn mowing business, he decided to upgrade to a running a paper route. His second loan was for $90 and his grandmother secured both loans for him because she believed in him. She was instrumental in helping him build the foundation for his future successes.

Sadly enough, his grandmother died when he was only 13 years old. The untimely death of his caretaker forced him to make a decision about the direction of his life. He had to move back to Louisville, KY to be with his mother. He worked two jobs to afford rent because he was renting the basement from his mother. He got married very young and had a child all before he graduated from high school. His marriage was very short lived due to the fact he was so young.

Billy Walters in 1965 got a job as a car salesman at McMackin Auto Sales, a used-car lot in Louisville. His drive and hustle was integral in his successful career as an auto salesman. His sales tactics were legendary and because he was so assertive he was able to sell on average about at 32 cars a month. By 1966 he was making $56,000 a year which with inflation is around $400,00 today. Some his tactics included mailing self-promotion letters to neighbors living on either side of a current customer. If he sold a car to someone, he would bombard their neighbors with fliers. He would look for car ads in the daily newspapers and trade with the sellers. He turned cold calling into an art form. On average he worked 80 hours a week and broke numerous records at the dealership.

Due to his success, he was poached by a competing dealership. He spent from 1967 until 1972 working at Steven’s Brothers Auto Sales as a sales manager. In 1972, he has decided that he was done working for other people and he took the plunge and opened his own business, called Taylor Boulevard Auto Sales. Taylor Boulevard Auto Sales would wholesale cars to other dealers across the southeastern part of the United States.

Although the business was wildly successful, Walters decided to shut the business down and become a full time sports bettor. Walters not only started working at a young age but he also started gambling. The money he earned from his paper route was put towards his first bet. He bet that the New York Yankees would beat the Brooklyn Dodgers in the 1955 World Series. He did not win the bet but this did not put him off from gambling. In fact, he was only determined to keep trying to win big.

This is the part of the Billy Walters’s public figure & story that is perfect for a high stakes scene in a movie. Despite gambling since he was nine years old, Walters did not experience good luck until he was in his mid-thirties. In June of 1986, Walters requested a freeze-out with Caesars Atlantic City for $2 million at the roulette tables. Caesars declined the bet because Walters was known to have lost two $1 million bets at the Las Vegas blackjack tables. But not all was lost, the Golden Nugget (now called the Atlantic Club Casino Hotel) decided to accept the offer. 

Both Walters and his gambling partner delivered $2 million to the cage at the Golden Nugget. They played for 38 hours and won a whopping $3.8 million, which beat the prior record of $1,280,000. This was the start of a huge winning streak that lasted 39 years. He became known as the world’s most famous sports bettor. His most notable bets included winning $2.2 million on a University of Southern California game and he won $3.5 on Super Bowl XLIV.

He has numerous notable bets and some that the public doesn’t even know about. His winning streak got him banned from certain casinos and sportsbooks in Las Vegas. That didn’t stop him however and through a certain clever system, he was able to continue to make some pretty wild bets. But it wasn’t only about winning the money, Walters is also a celebrated philanthropist in Las Vegas.

This wild adrenaline rush coupled with the ups and downs of the gambling world and his history as a self-starter makes for a dramatic story. It is a story that should definitely be depicted on the big screen. There are certain people that live extraordinary lives and their life story would capture audiences. The Billy Walters story is one of those stories. It’s time that someone takes his story and brings it to a wider audience.

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