No, Bruno Mars Does Not Have A $50 Million MGM Gambling Debt


Bruno Mars has been an artist in residence at the Park MGM in Las Vegas for almost nine years now, having signed on with the casino in 2016 and recently booking 12 upcoming shows throughout 2024. That’s a long time for a performer at Mars’s level of fame to stay booked for a Vegas residency. On the one hand, you could assume that the Mars/MGM partnership has gone on for so long because it is a mutually beneficial and highly profitable relationship.

Orrr… if you’re a dozen lazy media outlets that don’t enjoy performing a modicum of fact-checking, Bruno has remained in servitude to MGM because he has wracked up $50 million worth of gambling debt to the casino that keeps him performing there against his will forever!

Spoiler alert: No, Bruno Mars does not have a $50 million gambling debt owed to MGM. Here’s what happened over the weekend to create this story…

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Over the weekend, a website called NewsNation (that I’ve never heard of and doesn’t APPEAR to be particularly credible) published a report that claimed Bruno Mars has wracked up a $50 million gambling debt owed to MGM overlords. NewsNation credited an anonymous source described as a “Vegas Insider” who claimed to have knowledge of Mars’ purportedly extensive gambling debts and puts the situation in stark terms:

“He owes millions to the MGM (from gambling). MGM basically owns him.”

The source goes on:

“He makes $90 million a year off of the deal he did with the casino, but then he has to pay back his debt… after taxes.”

If true, this would indeed be a salacious story. So you can somewhat understand why the “Bruno Mars has $50 million Gambling Debt” headline was repeated by hundreds of outlets, including by the likes of Yahoo, The Source, Complex, Buzzfeed (Buzzfeed’s article was very skeptical, though), and many more.

The uproar got so loud that MGM actually had to address the rumor. Today MGM issued a statement which called the rumor “completely false.” Elaborating…

We’re proud of our relationship with Bruno Mars, one of the world’s most thrilling and dynamic performers. From his shows at Dolby Live at Park MGM to the new Pinky Ring lounge at Bellagio, Bruno’s brand of entertainment attracts visitors from around the globe. MGM and Bruno’s partnership is longstanding and rooted in mutual respect. Any speculation otherwise is completely false; he has no debt with MGM. Together, we are excited to continue creating unforgettable experiences for our guests.

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