On Thursday, online sportsbook PointsBet announced that it will offer bets on the Academy Awards.
This makes PointsBet the first US sportsbook to accept legal wagers on the Oscars.
In a statement, PointsBet US CEO, Johnny Aitken said: “We’re thrilled to become the first U.S. operator to offer betting on the Academy Awards.
“The Oscars are one of the biggest events on the annual viewing calendar and Oscars pools have long been incredibly popular, so giving users the opportunity bet on who they think will win Best Picture or Best Actress will add yet another layer of excitement to the viewing experience.”
PointsBet is accepting bets on the most popular Oscar categories which are Best Director, Best Picture, Best Actor, Best Actress, Best Supporting Actor and Best Supporting Actress.
Earlier this week, the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement (NJDGE) granted New Jersey sportsbooks permission to take bets on the Oscars.
According to a report from Legal Sports Report, the NJDGE issued an email to New Jersey Sportsbook operators which said: “The Division has received multiple requests to allow wagering on the 2019 Academy Awards (a/k/a The Oscars), which is taking place on February 24, 2019.
“After reviewing the relevant information on integrity issues, the Division has determined that pre-event betting on The Oscars can be offered for this year only.”
New Jersey is the first state in the US to authorize betting on the Academy Awards.
Although sportsbooks in Nevada have been operating much longer, the Nevada Gaming Commission restricts betting on entertainment markets like the Oscars.
It is possible that more sportsbooks in New Jersey will begin taking bets on the Academy Awards which are held on 24 February 2019.