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Montana Machines for TV

It probably would not occur to many people that there would be a use for antique slot machines these days, but a man from Billings just sold a whole batch of his Montana machines for TV show Vegas, soon to be aired on CBS. The show has already attracted a lot of attention, particularly for Dennis Quaid’s role as the local sheriff, and with a plot based on real events you would of course expect the production team to pay as much attention to detail as possible.

Enter Lou Adler, who owns the Slots of Montana shop in Billings and makes slot machines his livelihood. He refurbishes old and damaged machines to bring them back to their former glory, and every now and then manages to sell a few – like the slot machine games that you will see popping up in the background of the casino shots on Vegas. Speaking of his day job, Adler says, “I enjoy it. It’s intriguing and keeps me busy.”

He is certainly your man to go to if you want some slot machines to fit in with a drama set in the past. “I probably have more machines than anybody in the United States,” Adler said. “In the neighborhood of 250 machines right now.” This was why he was the first port of call for producers of the show, who heard about his collection and decided to go for it, asking him to supply machines from the correct era to furnish their set. “{The] Phone rang one day and this lady said she was from CBS television, and wanted to buy some slot machines for a production company for a show this fall,” he explained.

The producers bought sixteen fully working machines, and it looks as though they could be seeing some real use again. “Of course Dennis Quaid being in it, everybody knows him and it should be an exciting show,” Adler was quoted as saying. “It’s going to be interesting to see, whether they’re going to be playing them or just use for a background. To buy that many, I would think they’re actually going to go up and play them!”

This is a great new part of the story for Adler, who still considers himself to be “a local little boy in Billings”. He acquired his first old slot machine way back in 1957, and that was the start of a beautiful fascination, culminating in his company opening in 1990.

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