The special promises to “chronicle the former champion’s climb, crash and comeback, from his difficult childhood to becoming undisputed world champion to his 1992 rape conviction and his personal struggles,” according to the press release.
In addition to unaired footage of Tyson’s interview with ABC’s Byron Pitts, the special will feature interviews from his “inner circle,” as well as actress Rosie Perez, ESPN reporter Jeremy Schaap and the former President of HBO Sports Ross Greenburg.
“In addition to being an inspiring story of the perseverance and hard-won growth of one extraordinary person, Mike Tyson’s life and career are also relevant to the important collective self-reflection finally occurring in America,” the executive producer, Geoffrey Fletcher, said in the press release.
Here’s what you need to know:
Time, Dates & Channel for ‘Mike Tyson: The Knockout’
DATES & TIME: ABC News’ four-hour documentary, Mike Tyson: The Knockout, will air in two parts on consecutive Tuesdays, May 25 and June 1, at 8 p.m. Eastern.
CHANNEL: Both episodes of the docuseries will air on ABC, available the next day on-demand and Hulu. You can verify your local ABC channel here by checking TV Guide’s TV listings. Use the “Provider” tab to update your location and provider.
Preview and Episode Descriptions for ‘Mike Tyson: The Knockout’
ABC released a preview for its two-part docuseries, Mike Tyson: The Knockout. In it, the famous boxer is quoted saying, “I’ve been listening to people tell me I wasn’t going to do anything with my life.”
The trailer provides a taste of his life’s controversies that will be tackled in the special.
“The only person that defeated him was him,” a voiceover says during the preview. As Perez adds, “I think Mike Tyson’s love-hate relationship with his public is the perfect American tragedy.”
Part one will begin “with Tyson’s youth and his transition from a bullied kid who, in a single instant, discovers his true power, which becomes the basis for the icon’s reputation as ‘The Baddest Man on the Planet,’” according to ABC’s press release. It will also explore his rise as a boxer and rocky marriage with Robin Givens. Featured interviews include trainers Bobby Stewart, Teddy Atlas and Joe Colangelo, as well as former opponents Michael Spinks and Buster Douglas.
The release says the second part will continue “with Tyson’s conviction and prison sentence for raping 18-year-old Desiree Washington, reviewing the cultural conversation that ensued throughout the trial as the public grappled with ideas around victimization and the fall of a hero.” The special will also detail his reentry into society, fights with Evander Holyfield and the death of Tyson’s daughter, Exodus. Featured interviews include his defense attorney James Voyles, special prosecutor Greg Garrison and unaired footage of Tyson’s interview with ABC’s Byron Pitts.
“The obsession remains,” said Danyel Smith, author and culture lead of ESPN’s Undefeated, in the preview. “It seems that he is unstoppable. It seems that he is forgiven for his crimes. A Hollywood star, this is the male American dream.”