Tyson, 48, recently told the Mirror that he has been discussing making a movie about his tumultuous life with Foxx, 46. On Wednesday, Variety followed up with a report that Terence Winter ("The Wolf of Wall Street") will write the script and Rick Yorn, Foxx's manager, will produce.
Yorn's office declined to comment on the reports, but Foxx has long been interested in telling Tyson's story on the big screen. Back in 2009, he discussed the possibility with MTV and said Tyson "has the most interesting story that no one has ever heard."
The prospect of such a film is intriguing, to say the least. Tyson, after all, is one of the most famous and most controversial sports celebrities in recent memory, and his turbulent life has been characterized by dizzying highs and lows. After enduring a rough childhood in Brooklyn, Tyson grew up into a uniquely ferocious boxer in the 1980s and became the youngest heavyweight champion ever at age 20.
A combustible presence inside and outside the ring, Tyson lost his title to Buster Douglas in a 1990 upset and later spent three years in prison after being convicted of rape. Although he eventually returned to the ring, he was never quite the same and is perhaps most remembered for biting off part of Evander Holyfield's ear.
Foxx is clearly passionate about taking on Tyson, and some of his past performances suggest the material could be in his wheelhouse. Foxx had his greatest screen success in another biopic, Taylor Hackford's "Ray," for which he won the Oscar for best actor.
He's also no stranger to sports movies, having played the cocky quarterback Willie Beamen in Oliver Stone's "Any Given Sunday" and Muhammad Ali's corner man, Drew Bundini Brown, in Michael Mann's "Ali."
Winter too would be on familiar ground: He tackled the life story of another controversial figure, shady stockbroker Jordan Belfort, in "The Wolf of Wall Street," and earned an Oscar nomination in the process.
Perhaps the biggest challenge involved in making a Tyson biopic would be finding a way to capture his outsize persona — the hulking physicality, the incongruously high-pitched voice, the infamous facial tattoo — without veering into caricature.
In recent years, Tyson has kept himself in the limelight with self-referential movie and TV appearances (see: "The Hangover"), a tell-all memoir, and a one-man Broadway show. In other words, he's constantly reminded us that he's the one and only Mike Tyson. Is the world ready for another?
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