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Revealing 'Tyson' documentary to be unveiled

Mike Tyson's phenomenal rise to glory and his epic fall from the pinnacle will be examined in a new documentary on the former undisputed world heavyweight champion to premiere at the Cannes Film Festival.

"Tyson", directed by James Toback, will combine more than 30 hours of interviews with highlights of Tyson's boxing career.

Tyson plans to fly from his suburban Las Vegas home to France this week to attend the film's debut. "I look at it now and I'm embarrassed I did it," Tyson told the New York Times.

"There's a lot of information people didn't need to know." Tyson, who turns 42 next month, says he has been off drugs and alcohol for the past 15 months after abusing both for years.

"I don't know who I am," Tyson told the newspaper. "That might sound stupid. I really have no idea. All my life I have been drinking and drugging and partying and all of a sudden this comes to a stop.

"I never thought I would live to this age." A now-vulnerable Tyson will reflect upon his mistakes, including an unhappy marriage and bitter divorce from actress Robin Givens, a three-year prison sentence for rape and squandering 400 million dollars on his way to bankruptcy.

Tyson, who went 50-6 with 44 knockouts, became the youngest heavyweight champion in boxing history in 1986 at age 20 and was the undisputed champion from 1987 until 1990, winning his first 37 fights in overwhelming fashion.

"I didn't know how to be any other way," Tyson said. "I felt like one of those barbarian kings just coming to conquer the Roman Empire. I was crazy."

Tyson lost his crowns to longshot Buster Douglas in Tokyo in 1990 and in 1992 was convicted of raping an 18-year-old beauty pageant contestant in 1991 at Indianapolis, where he served three years in prison before a 1995 release.

Tyson reclaimed the heavyweight throne but lost to Evander Holyfield in 1996 and bit Holyfield's ears twice in a 1997 rematch, adding banishment to his ridicule. One final chance to recapture the crown in 2002 resulted in an eighth-round knockout at the hands of Britain's Lennox Lewis.

Tyson filed for bankruptcy in 2003 and retired after losses to Britain's Danny Williams in 2004 and American Kevin McBride in 2005.

Toback has directed several sports-related projects. He met a teen Tyson in 1985 while directing "The Pick-up Artist" in New York and cast him in two movies, "Black and White" in 1999 and "When Will I Be Loved" in 2004.

Toback interviewed Tyson last year in Beverly Hills and Malibu while the ex-champ was in a nearby rehabilitation clinic.

"I want to take drugs every day, drink every day. But I don't because I made that commitment," Tyson told ESPN last month.

"I just say, 'I'm not getting high today,'" Tyson told the Times. "I'm not promising them I'm not getting high tomorrow.

I'm just trying to figure it out. I'm in an abysmal world trying to figure it out." The film is expected to be released in cinemas later this year.

 

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