Robin Givens, Mike Tyson’s Ex-Wife: 5 Fast Facts

Robin Givens and Mike Tyson

Getty Robin Givens and Mike Tyson in 1988.

Robin Givens is known for her acting career, but her personal life has also grabbed headlines. In the late 1980s, the actress, now 56, had her name splashed across tabloids amid her high-profile divorce from heavyweight boxing champ,  Mike Tyson.

Givens has spent decades trying to move on from the drama with her ex-husband, but a new biopic about Tyson has her once again reliving parts of her painful past.

Here’s what you need to know about Robin Givens:

1. Robin Givens Quit Grad School To Pursue a Career in Acting

Givens attended several prestigious schools before turning her attention to acting. She graduated from the  New Rochelle Academy in New York at age 15, then studied pre-med at Sarah Lawrence College, graduating at age 19, according to People.

Givens was then accepted to Harvard for graduate school, but she dropped out after two years to pursue a career in acting. One of her first acting roles was on Bill Cosby’s “The Cosby Show,” in 1985. She would go on to land a starring role in the ABC sitcom “Head of the Class” the following year, per IMDB. Givens has enjoyed a steady acting career for more than 30 years, most recently on the TV series “Riverdale” and “Ambitions.”

2. Robin Givens’ Voiltile Marriage to Mike Tyson Ended On Valentine’s Day in 1989

Boxing Legend Mike Tyson


During her “Head of the Clas” heyday, Givens began a relationship with world heavyweight champ Mike Tyson. The couple wed in February 1988, but the marriage was short-lived. Just eight months after exchanging vows with her husband, Givens filed for divorce and alleged that Tyson physically abused her, per People. While Givens accused her ex of harming her both physically and mentally and said she was “afraid” of his temper,  Tyson claimed she tricked him into their marriage by telling him she was pregnant, per a 1989 report by the Associated Press.

As part of the divorce settlement, Tyson was granted ownership of the exes’ $4 million estate in Bernardsville, New Jersey, while Givens left the marriage with jewelry, several automobiles, and an undisclosed amount of money.

In 1997, Givens had a second brief marriage to tennis instructor Svetozar Marinkovic.

3. Robin Givens Once Dated Michael Jordan —  And Howard Stern

Before she became involved with Tyson, Givens had another famous athlete boyfriend. She reportedly once dated NBA star Michael Jordan, and her ex-husband was not happy about it. According to the New York Post, Tyson once approached Jordan at a dinner party at a Chicago restaurant and called him out for dating his former wife.

Chicago Bears coach Mike Ditka, defensive end Richard Dent, and boxing promoter Don King all witnessed Tyson’s confrontation of the basketball legend,  according to Tyson insider Rory Holloway’s book, “Taming the Beast: The Untold Story of Mike Tyson.”

At the time, Tyson was still stewing over his split from the Hollywood star and became emotional after downing several Long Island Iced Teas.

“I’m telling the server to water his drinks down ‘cause I see where this is going,” Holloway wrote of Tyson. “Mike stares across the table at Michael Jordan. He says, ‘Hey man, you think I’m stupid? I know you f—-d with my b—h. Jordan looks like he just seen a ghost. ‘I know you messed with her,’ Mike says. …Jordan, it’s obvious he just wants to get up and run. He wants no part of this. It was a circus that night. Don King trying to change the subject. Me and John trying to hold Mike down. Mike telling everyone he’s going to bust Jordan’s a–. Jordan’s dressed sharp as always and he can’t get out of there fast enough.”

Givens also once dated radio host Howard Stern. During an appearance on “Watch What Happens Live,” she revealed that the  radio legend “was a magnificent lover…like,  unbelievable.”

4. Robin Givens Has 2 Children

According to IMDB, Givens suffered a miscarriage while she was married to Tyson, but she went on to become a mom of two.

In 1993, Givens adopted her first son, Buddy, as a single mom. In 1999, she gave birth to a second son, William “Billy” Jensen,  who was fathered by her longtime partner, tennis player Murphy Jensen,  per People.

5. Robin Givens Recently Directed Her First Film

While Givens has been in front of the camera s as a model and actress for decades,  she recently went behind the camera as a director. She told Page Six she has three films in the works for the Lifetime Network, including her 2020 directorial debut, “Ann Rules’ A Murder to Remember.”

She also directed the BET original film “Favorite Son,” as well as multiple episodes of “Riverdale.” Of her career as a director, Givens told the outlet, “It was my dream to go to work and not go do hair and makeup.”

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