There are some people you never want to be annoyed with you.
With director Craig Gillespie, producer Margot Robbie, and writer Steven Rogers at the helm (the team behind the film “I, Tonya”), Hulu is slated to debut “Mike,” a limited series that follows legendary boxing superstar Mike Tyson from his early childhood to his days in prison and so on. The series, which premieres on August 25, stars Trevante Rhodes (Moonlight) as Mike Tyson, Russell Hornsby as the eclectic boxing promotor Don King, and Harvey Keitel.
There has been much chatter about Hulu’s upcoming show and how it will portray the controversial heavyweight. Press releases have said that the series will cover everything from Tyson’s criminal history to his fall from grace and eventual comeback. One can surely expect them to cover Tyson’s domestic violence allegations and his bout with Holyfield.
In 2021, Mike Tyson was working on a biographical series of his own titled “Tyson” and tapped Jamie Foxx for the leading role. According to Variety, Antoine Fuqua and Martin Scorsese were set to direct the series.
“I have been looking to tell my story for quite some time,” Tyson told Variety last year. “With the recent launch of Legends Only League and the excitement from fans following my return to the ring, now feels like the perfect moment. I look forward to collaborating with Martin, Antoine, Jamie, and the entire creative team to bring audiences a series that not only captures my professional and personal journey but also inspires and entertains.”
However, it’s been quite some time, and it seems that production has been hit with a number of delays. These delays may have worked in Hulu’s favor, as they have decided to move forward with the release of their “Mike” biopic. A biopic that Tyson has long stood firm against, stating that the series was unauthorized and he was not being compensated for his story. He also called for a boycott of the streaming giant.
In a now-deleted Instagram post from February 2021, Tyson accused Hulu of corporate greed and tone-deaf cultural misappropriation for announcing their film during Black History Month.
“Hulu’s announcement to do an unauthorized mini-series of the Tyson story without compensation, although unfortunate, isn’t surprising. This announcement on the heels of social disparities in our country is a prime example of how Hulu’s corporate greed led to this tone-deaf cultural misappropriation of the Tyson life story. To make this announcement during Black History Month only confirms Hulu’s concern for dollars over respect for black story rights. Hollywood needs to be more sensitive to black experiences especially after all that has transpired in 2020. The real Mike Tyson authorized story is in development and will be announced in coming days. Hulu to announce stealing a black athletes story during Black History month couldn’t be more inappropriate or tone deaf. #boycotthulu #corporategreed
These actions taken by Hulu are just the tip of the iceberg. We shouldn’t be surprised by these abhorrent actions as they represent the systemic racism that has plagued Hollywood for its entire existence. These corporate giants hide behind plays and praise themselves for offering tone-deaf attempts at diversity and inclusion like Hulu’s “Black Stories” playlist that recommends stories about Black culture to viewers on the app. Yet behind closed doors they steal stories from the Black community. #BoycottHulu”
It may be a year later, but the former heavyweight champ is not taking his foot off of Hulu’s neck. On Saturday, Aug. 6, he took to his Twitter account to, once again, voice his frustrations with Hulu for allegedly stealing his story.
“Hulu stole my story,” he tweeted. “They’re Goliath and I’m David. Heads will roll for this.”
Tyson signed off his Twitter rant with one final message, and frankly, I wouldn’t want to stick around to find out what he meant by it.
“Hulu’s model of stealing life rights of celebrities is egregiously greedy,” he wrote. Followed by the hashtag “#headswillroll”