Jamie Foxx confirmed that work is finally underway on his long-gestating film about boxer Mike Tyson. During an Instagram Live interview with Mark Birnbaum Wednesday, the Oscar-winner opened up about the project and showed off his chiseled upper-body in preparation for the project. Foxx said the goal of the film will be to show Tyson at the height of his career and his controversies outside the ring.
During the Instagram video, Birnbaum asked Foxx about the Tyson movie, which has been in the works for years. Foxx said the project is definitely happening, but noted how hard it can be to make biopics happen. "Doing biographies is a tough thing. Sometimes it takes 20 years to get them done, but we officially got the real ball rolling," the actor, who has an Oscar for playing Ray Charles in Ray, said. Foxx's comments on the Tyson movie start at about 53 minutes into the conversation.
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Foxx told a story from his days as a stand-up comedian in his early 20s when he was about to tell a joke about Tyson and learned the man was in the audience. Foxx was nervous, but he agreed to tell the joke after Tyson told him to. Tyson said the joke "better be funny," and thankfully it was. "So I started hanging out with Mike Tyson so I got to see Mike in two different ways, two different lives," Foxx said. "I saw him at the height of his career and then when things got bad, things got bumpy, I also saw him as well, so what I'm excited about the movie is to show those moments of the different Mike."
Foxx, 52, said the filmmakers hope to show that everyone can evolve through Tyson's lens. There will also be plenty of technology used to make him look like a younger Tyson, 53. "I guarantee you, people will run up on me in the street and ask for an autograph and think that I'm Mike," Foxx, who is only a few months younger than Tyson, joked.
Jamie foxx starring in another biopic? Easy work pic.twitter.com/hMXKN9xm37— Stark (@StarkJeweIs) June 19, 2020
Foxx still has to undergo a physical transformation to prepare for boxing scenes. He does 60 pull-ups, 60 dips and 100 push-ups every other day, he told Birnbaum. "I ain't got no calf muscles, so we might have to get some prosthetics for that," he joked.
The Tyson project was first announced in Variety in July 2014. At that time, The Sopranos writer Terence Winter, who also earned an Oscar nomination for The Wolf of Wall Street, was signed to write the script. Rick Yorn, Foxx's manager, was set to produce. It was also not clear what parts of Tyson's life the film would center on, but based on Foxx's comments Wednesday, it appears they plan to cover as much as possible in a single film.