Mike Tyson was used to destroying opponents in the ring, and now he’s looking to continue his killer ways in a new venue — the acting stage.
This week director Spike Lee announced that he’s bringing the former boxing champ’s one-man show to HBO. The show, Mike Tyson: Undisputed Truth, delves into the boxer’s life and struggles with anger.
The show has been a surprise hit, launching Mike Tyson into a new phase of an acting career that includes a much-loved appearance in The Hangover and aspirations for bigger things.
Tyson said he approaches the stage the same way he did the boxing ring.
“I can’t wait to get my hands on the guy like I can’t wait to get on stage,” he said. “Just like in a fight, I wanted to kill everybody in the room, by my performance, of course.”
Tyson seems to have caught the acting bug. As his one-man show toured the United States and abroad, he started to get aspirations for something bigger.
“Wouldn’t Shakespeare be awesome?” he told the New York Daily News. “That black guy … could you imagine me in Othello?”
Mike Tyson said if he was given enough time, he could be ready to take on any stage role. But he’s also willing to admit his limitations.
“A lot of my friends are actors and directors and they say: ‘Mike, we need you to concentrate and take it seriously.’ They say my skills are horrible, but I have the natural timings for it. I am working on my skills.”
Spike Lee said Tyson has been endearing to audiences because of his willingness to bare himself on stage.
“He’s out there on this stage naked, sharing his experience, his ups and downs, to the audience,” Lee said. “And it’s traumatic. And to do that without thinking about how — whether people are going to love me or like me or hate me, that’s not — he doesn’t care about. He says, ‘I’m going to tell you the truth. This is my life, and do it with it what you will.’ “
Mike Tyson sees an acting future bigger than guest appearances and one-man shows. He said wants to dance and sing in musicals next.