Mike Tyson is speaking out against Hulu's upcoming biopic series about his life, Mike. Set to release on Aug. 25, the series "explores the dynamic and controversial story" of the former professional boxer, who competed from 1985 to 2005, including "the tumultuous ups and downs of Tyson's boxing career and personal life." To create the biopic, however, Hulu "stole" Tyson's life story, the star accused in a Saturday Instagram post.
Tyson slammed the streamer and the series, writing in the Saturday post that the streamer produced the series without his permission or compensation. In the post, Tyson alleged that Hulu "desperately" attempted to pay Dana White, the standing president of premiere mixed martial arts organization Ultimate Fighting Championship, "millions without offering me a dollar to promote" Mike, which Tyson dubbed Hulu's "slave master take over story about my life." He went on to reveal that White "turned it down because he honors friendship and treating people with dignity." He concluded the post by writing, "I'll never forget what he did for me just like I'll never forget what Hulu stole from me."
In a second post, Tyson warned his followers, "Don't let Hulu fool you," explaining, "I don't support their story about my life. It's not 1822. It's 2022." He claimed that Hulu "stole my life story and didn't pay me. To Hulu executives I'm just a n****r they can sell on the auction block." He captioned the post, "Hulu is the streaming version of the slave master. They stole my story and didn't pay me."
This is not the first time Tyson has spoken out against Mike. Shortly after the series was greenlit, Tyson expressed his disapproval of the series, writing in a since-deleted February 2021 Instagram post, per Deadline, that "Hulu's announcement to do an unauthorized mini-series of the Tyson story without compensation, although unfortunate, isn't surprising. This announcement on the heels of social disparities in our country is a prime example of how Hulu's corporate greed led to this tone-deaf cultural misappropriation of the Tyson life story. To make this announcement during Black History Month only confirms Hulu's concern for dollars over respect for black story rights." He called on Hollywood to "be more sensitive to black experiences especially after all that has transpired in 2020."
During Hulu's Television Critics Tour panel on Thursday, Mike showrunner, Karen Gist, addressed the unauthorized nature of the project, stating, "we just wanted to tell an unbiased story and have the audience decide what they think or feel." Gist explained that "challenging what people think they know about Mike and hoping that they come away from the series with something else to think about." Hulu has not responded to Tyson's criticism of the series.