Mike Tyson is the former heavy-weight champion of the boxing world. In his prime, “Iron Mike” was one of the world’s most famous celebrities. However, his fame and fortune quickly lead him down the road to drug and alcohol addiction. His life spiraled out of control and, eventually, he ended up in prison. Now, clean and sober for the first time in years, Mike Tyson is bringing his story to Broadway. Directed by Spike Lee in a one man show, Mike Tyson opens up to the world in a way few celebrities ever have. The production is already garnering critical acclaim, and fans are lining up around the block to hear the former champ tell his tale of addiction and recovery.
The Undisputed Truth
“Mike Tyson: The Undisputed Truth” tells the tale of how Tyson hit rock bottom, when he was on massive amounts of cocaine and spending all of his money on prostitutes. Tyson says he views the production as a form of therapy. “I’m very vulnerable and I’m just telling you what I am and where I’m from and how this happened” Tyson recently told an interviewer. “I just threw up the white flag. There was too many prison cells, too many jails, too many lawsuits, too many bankruptcies, too many women, too many venereal diseases, too many everything. I got tired. I really got tired of, you know, like every time a prostitute – I would head back from a trip – I had to sleep with her. So I just said, ‘I’m going to live a different life.” The show starts with Tyson talking about how his alcoholic mother influenced his behavior towards women and how she fueled his curiosity about drugs.
Spike Lee, who is more well-known for his directorial efforts in film, is thrilled with the way the production has come together, and believes that audiences from all walks of like will be enthralled by Tyson’s tale. “What Mike’s going to do is display the same courage he displayed in the ring. I think it’s just as much courage to just go on stage and you bare your soul to the audience. And I think it’s captivating to do that” Lee recently told reporters. What Mike Tyson is doing is an extreme form of personal therapy, and he says that it is helping stay focused on his sobriety.
While getting on stage by yourself and baring your life story may not be everyone’s cup of tea, sharing experiences with others is a vital component of recovery. Inpatient drug and alcohol treatment programs are the best way for people who are struggling with addictions to drugs and alcohol come to terms with their addictions. It is very difficult for people who are in the midst of a serious addiction to get out of it on their own. This is why rehabilitation is so vital. Mike Tyson should be commended for tackling his issues so publically, and letting people know that it’s okay to get knocked down in life as long as you get back up.