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A Terrible Beauty
by Alexander Ramirez (onewayoutproductions@gmail.com)

Rated: R   Genre: Sports   User Review: ****
A biography of former undisputed heavyweight boxing champion, Mike Tyson. The script traces the controversial pugilist from his discovery as a troubled teenager to his final title bout. Acknowledgement to the works and words of Peter Heller, Jose Torres, Joyce Carol Oates, Teddy Atlas, Richard Hoffer, Daniel O'Connor, John Lombardi, Tom Junod, Donald McRae, Ron Borges, Bert Randolf Sugar, George Foreman, Jim Lampley, and the man himself: "Iron" Mike Tyson.


This screenplay is copyrighted to its author. All rights reserved. This screenplay may not be used or reproduced without the express written permission of the author.



INT. CONVENTION HALL - BACKSTAGE - NIGHT
                                                            
Two Black men rip down the cramped corridor, their skulls
and shoulders dappled by the shallow light from a trail of
naked light bulbs overhead. BUTCH LEWIS, 42, charges forward
in an all-white tuxedo; his pace and rhythm is replicated by
a musclebound, vinyl-clad DROOG.
                                                            
 
INT. TYSON'S DRESSING ROOM - NIGHT
                                                            
A series of unseen blows rattles the entry door from the
other side. The cacophony prompts motes of wood dust to
burst free from the trembling jambs. The door is jerked
opened, and Butch and his droog attempt to mow over Tyson's
entourage on their way in.
                                                            
                       BUTCH
Excuse me, brotha, but can you get
the hell out of my way? I got
something real I need to attend
to.
                                                            
Additional members of the substantial Tyson entourage
activate and plow Butch and his droog back toward the
hallway. A confused ball of violence coalesces in the door
frame.
                                                            
A New Jersey Boxing Commission INSPECTOR and CHAIRMAN LARRY
HAZZARD rush over to quell the sea of chaos at the door.
                                                            
                       HAZZARD
Okay, hold it! Back up! Calm down!
                                                            
The opposing sides release each other at Hazzard's
intervention, but both parties retain bellicose postures in
the bulge of every bicep and the strain of every masseter.
                                                            
                       BUTCH
Larry, we got the biggest fight of
the century, and these
motherfuckers want to mess around!
I'm here for my fighter, in his
best interest, all right? I got a
man I need to protect from
bullshit like this!
                                                            
The room is suddenly hushed -- save for intermittent blares
that emanate from the furthest corner: sharp grunts and
snorts.
                                                            

2.

                       HAZZARD
I understand, we understand, but
calm yourself, because we got it
all under control now --
                                                            
                       BUTCH
No, no, no, I need to see this.
Excuse me, Larry, but I can't
trust nothin' but my own two eyes
when it comes to the safety of my
fighter.
      (pointing)
That monster back there knows he's
in trouble. He's gonna get the
Spinks Jinx put on him, so he's
trying every dirty, wily trick he
can get away with!
                                                            
These words incite the mob again. The Commission's
representatives fight to restore order.
                                                            
At the rear of the room, where Lewis had pointed, stands
trainer KEVIN ROONEY, 30s, a white man, overseeing his
fighter's calisthenics routine. The fighter is a black
wraith, seemingly oblivious to the tussle twenty feet away.
He flicks jabs in the air, bisects space with heavy right
hooks, grunting and snorting as he swings muscle and bone at
an imaginary opponent.
                                                            
 
INT. CONVENTION HALL - MAIN HALL - NIGHT
                                                            
Over 20,000 agitated spectators are stuffed into arena
seats. Over their dissonance, ring announcer MICHAEL BUFFER
is tolling off a list of celebrity introductions from center
ring.
                                                            
RINGSIDE
                                                            
BILL CAYTON, 70s, regal in a three-piece ensemble, sits with
his wife, DORIS, 60s, and the stately LORRAINE JACOBS, 50s.
They are all white.
                                                            
A man in a suit appears in the aisle. He delivers an
envelope to Mr. Cayton and briskly skips away. Bill looks
around, baffled.
                                                            
ELSEWHERE RINGSIDE
                                                            
ROBIN GIVENS, 23, all high cheekbones and processed hair,
sits between her swanky mother, RUTH ROPER, 42, and the
ever-ostentatious DON KING, 56. They're all Black.
                                                            

3.

                       BUFFER (O.C.)
      (over P.A. system)
... Television and film actress,
as well as wife of the heavyweight
champion, ladies and gentlemen...
Robin Givens.
                                                            
A torrent of boos rains down from the stands, reverberating
throughout the arena. Robin stretches her face into a forced
smile, hooking the edges of her rictus onto those prominent
cheekbones.
                                                            
 
INT. TYSON'S DRESSING ROOM - NIGHT
                                                            
Bedlam resumes. Hazzard is locked between the entourage and
Butch over the entry door's threshold.
                                                            
                       BUTCH
It ain't gonna be a fight if we
don't do something about this
knot!
                                                            
A sectionalized glimpse of the fighter reveals his austere
black boxing trunks; another shows that he wears plain black
leather shoes with no socks.
                                                            
                       HAZZARD
It's been smoothed out. I saw the
knot, it could have been a
problem, so we had them cut the
glove off, re-tape the damn thing,
and now it's gone. It's fixed.
                                                            
The fighter's torso screams with muscles; a crude tattoo
boasting "MIKE" has been freehanded into the crevice above
his right bicep.
                                                            
                       BUTCH
This is serious, Larry. I don't
want my man cut like this. This is
the fight of the century; we can't
let it come down to some bullshit.
                                                            
The fighter works out punch combinations against the
concrete wall. Fists encased in red leather fly out in a
rhythmic flurry. Every strike against the concrete resounds
with a thunderous thump.
                                                            
 

4.

INT. SPINKS' DRESSING ROOM - NIGHT
                                                            
Heavyweight contender MICHAEL SPINKS, 31, sits on the edge
of a medical table nestled against the wall. He's robed in
white satin, suited for the impending contest.
                                                            
THUMP... THUMP... THUMP... The wall rattles with vigor as
the fighter fires away on the other side. Spinks' corner men
regard their boxer with consternation, for he retains an air
that should never subsist on a fighter's face. As the
concrete shakes behind him, a glint of fear glazes his eye.
                                                            
 
INT. TYSON'S DRESSING ROOM - NIGHT
                                                            
                       HAZZARD
There is no more problem, Butch.
It wasn't much of an issue to
begin with, and I handled it.
                                                            
Butch relents, instructing his droog to relax with a nod.
                                                            
                       INSPECTOR
All right, the crowd's pissed now.
Let's get this show on the road
before they riot.
                                                            
                       BUTCH
If something happens to my boy, if
they ruin this spectacle, it's on
you, Larry.
                                                            
Hazzard and the inspector ease Butch and his droog back out
of the dressing room. Tyson's entourage relaxes.
                                                            
                       KEVIN
About goddamn time. You ready to
whip some ass or what?
                                                            
The fighter: "IRON" MIKE TYSON, aged 21, is a hulking mass
of compacted muscle and angst. He relieves the wall and
turns to his trainer.
                                                            
                       TYSON
You know what, Kev?
                                                            
The sight of Tyson registers like one of his punches:
savagely short hair; pit bullish eyes; an armored brow
ridge; two flashes of gold on his teeth. He looks like no
other creature on this planet.
                                                            
                       TYSON (cont'd)
I'm gonna kill this motherfucker.
                                                            

5.

TITLE OVER BLACK: CHAPTER I - BALLET OF BLOOD
                                                            
 
EXT. CATSKILL BOXING CLUB - NIGHT
                                                            
A nondescript sedan skims across the darkness and parks
before the humble police department building that houses the
Catskill Boxing Club.
                                                            
 
INT. SEDAN - NIGHT
                                                            
BOBBY STEWART, late 20s, a white man, pulls the key from the
ignition. He turns his head to the passenger seat, occupied
by MICHAEL GERARD TYSON, aged 13.
                                                            
                       BOBBY
Mike, Cus D'Amato is the guy who
made Floyd Patterson the youngest
heavyweight champ of all time.
                                                            
Young Tyson stares up at the boxing club through the window.
                                                            
                       BOBBY
When I was a fighter, I got to go
on the international teams. I was
able to travel all over the world,
all for free. Because I was a
fighter. You can have all of that
if you really want it. But you
have to really want it. You can
better yourself through boxing. It
can improve you as a human being,
a man. Not just in the ring but
everywhere in life. I've taken you
as far as I can. Cus can teach you
the type of discipline that only
great men possess. Great thinkers
and great leaders; not just great
athletes. That's what we talk
about back at the school, right?
Emotional discipline as well as
physical discipline. Right?
                                                            
Tyson pipes up with a soft lisp:
                                                            
                       TYSON
Yeah...
                                                            
                       BOBBY
I'll bring you over here a few
times. Hopefully he'll take an
interest. I think he will. You've
got the raw talent he likes. I've
            (MORE)

6.

                       BOBBY (cont'd)
seen it. You're getting a special
opportunity, Mike, I hope you
realize. Please... don't fuck this
up, too.
                                                            
 
INT. CATSKILL BOXING CLUB - NIGHT
                                                            
Bobby enters with Tyson in tow. Waiting to greet them is
TEDDY ATLAS, KEVIN ROONEY, and CONSTANTINE "CUS" D'AMATO.
                                                            
                       CUS
Bobby!
                                                            
                       BOBBY
Hey, how you doing, Cus?
                                                            
The men converge to exchange handshakes.
                                                            
                       CUS
I'm all right. I got to wake up
again this morning, didn't I?
      (to Tyson)
How are you, son? I'm Cus.
                                                            
Cus, 70s, is a relic of a man. The topography of his
hardened face is akin to the impure surface of the Earth,
and his white, wisping eyebrows make him look like The Mad
Kung-fu Master on Top of the Mountain.
                                                            
Cus offers his white hand to Tyson. The teen accepts it.
                                                            
                       TYSON
I'm Mike. Nice to meet you.
                                                            
                       BOBBY
This is Cus, who I was telling you
about. And these are some of his
boys. That's Teddy, and that's
Kevin.
                                                            
Tyson nods a coy hello to Teddy and Kevin. Cus' boys are
both street wise, early 20s ruffians given direction and
purpose by the sport of boxing. And they're white.
                                                            
                       TEDDY
Nice to meet you, Mike.
                                                            
                       KEVIN
Hey... kid.
                                                            

7.

Cus, Teddy, and Kevin stare dubiously at young Tyson. The
child stands just over five and a half feet tall, a squat
frame for a two-hundred pound mass of unpolished muscle.
                                                            
                       CUS
I hear you want to become a
fighter? Been working with Bobby?
                                                            
                       TYSON
Yes, sir.
                                                            
                       CUS
Good, good.
      (to Bobby)
Well, I'd like to see you spar
with him a few rounds. I want to
see him with a living, breathing
opponent. What do you think?
                                                            
                       BOBBY
Uh, yeah. Fine.
                                                            
                       CUS
Teddy, get 'em ready.
                                                            
Teddy leads Tyson and Bobby to the boxing ring planted in
the center of the gymnasium. Kevin holds Cus back, whispers:
                                                            
                       KEVIN
How old did he say that kid was?
                                                            
                       CUS
He said... thirteen.
                                                            
                       KEVIN
Thirteen?! Better ask his ass for
a birth certificate.
                                                            
Glove laces are fastened, headgear is slipped on, and
mouthpieces are locked over tooth and gum. Teddy stands in
the center of the ring as referee. Cus and Kevin lean
against the apron.
                                                            
                       CUS
Let's go.
                                                            
Tyson blitzes Bobby and unleashes a crude barrage of
punches. Hooks play Bobby's ribcage like a xylophone; the
grown man winces. Bobby is forced to uncork a combination
that throws the boy's head back.
                                                            
                       KEVIN
Round!
                                                            

8.

                       TEDDY
Back to your corners!
                                                            
Teddy brings a towel to clear Tyson's face of blood. As he
does, he looks over to Cus: the old sage is glowing.
                                                            
                       TEDDY
All right, we've seen enough.
                                                            
                       TYSON
What?
                                                            
                       TEDDY
That's good for now. Good work.
                                                            
                       TYSON
No, no, we always go three rounds.
Just let me finish and --
                                                            
                       TEDDY
That's enough! That's all you're
getting today. You did good.
                                                            
Tyson looks up at Teddy. The twenty-something has a
horizontal scar that traverses the left side of his face;
it's the kind switchblades make. Tyson appeals to Bobby with
pleading eyes. The man is throughly exhausted, shamelessly
sucking air in his respective corner.
                                                            
                       BOBBY
That's good for tonight. Good job.
                                                            
Teddy removes Tyson's gear. Bobby kneels down to speak to
Cus through the ropes.
                                                            
                       BOBBY
What did you think? He's a pretty
good kid, right? Ferocious.
                                                            
Cus looks at Bobby with profound sincerity.
                                                            
                       CUS
Pretty good? That's the next
heavyweight champion of the world.
                                                            
                       BOBBY
What?
                                                            
                       CUS
If he wants it and can avoid
outside distractions, he's the
future of professional boxing...
When is he up for parole?
                                                            
 

9.

INT. TRYON SCHOOL FOR BOYS - RECEIVING AREA - DAY
                                                            
A metal door buzzes open. Mike emerges with a neat
commissary bundle in his arms. Two uniformed guards -- one
of them Bobby -- escort him toward the prison's exit.
                                                            
 
EXT. CAMILLE'S ESTATE (ESTABLISHING) - DAY
                                                            
An understated Victorian mansion, nestled against the shores
of the Hudson River in Catskill, New York.
                                                            
 
INT. CAMILLE'S ENTRY WAY - DAY
                                                            
Cus enters with Tyson. Mike adjusts a duffel bag around his
shoulder. The interior of the home is humble, a mansion
merely in terms of its dimensions.
                                                            
                       CUS
Welcome home, son. Let's go see
what everybody's up to.
                                                            
 
INT. CAMILLE'S LIVING ROOM - DAY
                                                            
Occupied by a herd of young boys, many of them roughly
Tyson's age. They're sprawled across the sofas, watching
television. Kevin from the club is among them.
                                                            
                       CUS
Look at my hardworking boys.
                                                            
The boys perk up with hellos. Tyson waves back meekly.
                                                            
                       KEVIN
How you doin', Mike?
                                                            
                       TYSON
Good. Hey, Kevin.
                                                            
                       CUS
He's one of our own, now.
Officially.
      (to Kevin)
Camille in the kitchen?
                                                            
 

10.

INT. CAMILLE'S KITCHEN - DAY
                                                            
CAMILLE EWALD, 70s, a motherly, bespectacled matriarch,
stands at the sink, washing silverware. A preadolescent boy
sits at the table, playing with a community of action
figures and toy trucks. Cus enters with Tyson.
                                                            
                       CUS
Camille, Mike's here.
                                                            
Ukrainian-born Camille speaks English with a unique accent:
                                                            
                       CAMILLE
How have you been?
                                                            
                       TYSON
Good, ma'am. Thank you.
                                                            
Cus opens the refrigerator.
                                                            
                       CUS
Camille, did you get enough food
for dinner tonight?
                                                            
Mike joins the little boy at the table and picks up an
action figure.
                                                            
                       CAMILLE
There'll be plenty.
                                                            
                       CUS
We got another kid in the house
now. A big kid. This doesn't look
like enough for all of us.
                                                            
Camille rolls her eyes. A hefty young man, JAY BRIGHT, early
20s, enters.
                                                            
                       JAY
Mikey, you're here!
                                                            
                       CAMILLE
      (to Cus)
It's plenty.
                                                            
                       CUS
Mike needs to eat. He eats a lot.
Growing boy.
                                                            
                       TYSON
Hi, Jay.
                                                            

11.

                       CUS
Here, cook this too.
                                                            
Cus pulls a kielbasa from the fridge. Jay rummages through a
cabinet.
                                                            
                       CAMILLE
I'm not cooking that.
                                                            
                       CUS
Just in case.
                                                            
                       CAMILLE
We have enough.
      (to Jay)
I'm starting dinner.
                                                            
                       JAY
I'm just getting a drink.
                                                            
                       CAMILLE
      (to Jay)
Wait for dinner.
      (to Cus)
Stop, we have more than enough.
                                                            
Mike manipulates the action figure's limbs. He twists an arm
and accidentally snaps it clean off.
                                                            
                       LITTLE BOY
Mike!
                                                            
                       TYSON
I'm sorry!
                                                            
Mike leaps from his seat to beg forgiveness, but his knee
catches the edge of the table-top -- the entire piece of
furniture flips over. Action figures and toy trucks spin in
the air before crashing onto Camille's tile.
                                                            
                       TYSON
Oh my God! I'm sorry! I'm sorry!
                                                            
                       CUS
Holy, Christ! Did you see that?
Did any of you see that?
                                                            
                       LITTLE BOY
My toy!
                                                            
                       TYSON
I'm so sorry! I'm sorry!
                                                            

12.

                       CAMILLE
Cus, I thought you fixed the
broken leg on that table!
                                                            
                       CUS
I did! I did! That's just Mike's
strength. Did you all see that?!
                                                            
The boy is heartbroken over his ruined toy.
                                                            
                       JAY
      (to the boy)
It's OK, buddy.
                                                            
                       CAMILLE
      (to the boy)
It's nothing, sweetheart. We can
get you another.
      (to Cus)
Show Mike his room, so he can put
that bag down. Then come back and
fix this table. We're eating soon.
                                                            
                       TYSON
I'm sorry, Camille.
                                                            
                       CAMILLE
Mikey, it's nothing. Go see your
new room.
                                                            
                       CUS
      (to Tyson)
Yeah, come on, champ.
      (to Camille)
And we need that sausage.
                                                            
Cus leads Tyson away. Jay helps the little boy pick up his
toys. Camille lifts the kielbasa from the counter and,
shaking her head, unwraps its plastic packaging.
                                                            
 
INT. TYSON'S BEDROOM - NIGHT
                                                            
The room is modest. Tyson prepares his bed for the night's
slumber. Enter Cus.
                                                            
                       CUS
Got everthing you need?
                                                            
                       TYSON
Yes. Thank you.
                                                            

13.

                       CUS
Good. I want to get you in the gym
tomorrow. Some sparring. How do
you feel about that?
                                                            
                       TYSON
OK.
                                                            
                       CUS
You worried or nervous?
                                                            
                       TYSON
No way.
                                                            
Mike hops in bed. Cus finds a seat.
                                                            
                       CUS
No way? You must be crazy then,
Mike. I hope you're just telling
me that, because you think it's
what I want to hear.
                                                            
                       TYSON
I'm not afraid.
                                                            
                       CUS
No? I think we need to call you a
doctor. You must be crazy then,
son. I have you in alien
surroundings. A new home, new
people, new family, and now I want
to put you in the boxing ring. And
you say you're completely fine
with that? No fear?
                                                            
                       TYSON
Maybe not completely fine, but...
                                                            
                       CUS
Ah, there we go. See, I knew you
weren't crazy. I'll tell you, you
can have all the skills in the
world, all the natural ability,
but if you don't have a head on
your shoulders, you've got
nothin'. I don't care what your
name is, you step into that ring,
and your nerves will start up.
Because the truth will find you in
there. Everything you are as a
person comes out in a boxing ring.
You're opening yourself up to
anyone who may be watching. You
make yourself vulnerable in that
            (MORE)

14.

                       CUS (cont'd)
way. People will be able to see
the plain truth about who you are
when you box. So if you aren't at
least nervous whenever you put the
gloves on and step in a ring, then
there's a problem because you
ain't human. You're human, ain't
ya?
                                                            
                       TYSON
Yeah, I'm human.
                                                            
                       CUS
Good, then. Good, I'm wanna tell
you a story that all the boys
know. The story of The Hero and
the Coward.
                                                            
                       TYSON
The Hero and the Coward?
                                                            
                       CUS
Goes like this: The hero and the
coward are very much alike. When
confronting an obstacle, they both
feel the exact same thing. The
same fear. Now, on one hand, the
coward is overwhelmed by this
feeling, this sensation of pure
fear, and he ducks and runs. The
coward can no longer face this
obstacle and breaks down at the
pivotal moment and concedes. The
fear eats him alive.
                                                            
Mike leans forward, absorbing the tale.
                                                            
                       CUS
So the hero, challenged with the
same fear and obstacle, simply
accepts it. He actually uses his
fear as a means of protection.
He's too scared to take
unnecessary risks against his
opponent, but he's not allowing
the fear to stop him from fighting
on. The hero harnesses his fear
and forges it into a shield for
his purpose. He fights on with an
indestructible will to succeed, an
unquenchable thirst for victory,
all the while recognizing and
understanding his fear.
            (MORE)

15.

                       CUS (cont'd)
Acknowledging it and respecting
it. That's the hero and the
coward. Do you understand it?
                                                            
Tyson nods.
                                                            
                       CUS
So how do you feel about the gym
tomorrow?
                                                            
                       TYSON
I'm scared.
                                                            
                       CUS
How scared?
                                                            
                       TYSON
Just enough?
                                                            
                       CUS
Perfect. Get some sleep, son.
                                                            
Cus pats Tyson on the shoulder and heads for the door.
                                                            
                       TYSON
Good night, Cus.
                                                            
                       CUS
Good night, Hero.
                                                            
Cus switches off the lights and closes the door behind him.
Tyson tosses and turns in his bed again and again. He jumps
up and resolves to shadowbox. A soft cone of light from the
window backlights a grunting, snorting silhouette shooting
dark fists into space.
                                                            
 
INT. CATSKILL BOXING CLUB - DAY
                                                            
A red boxing glove sinks into the torso of a duct-taped
heavy bag. Teddy holds the bag steady for Tyson's assault.
                                                            
                       TEDDY
Four, eight, six!
                                                            
Tyson unleashes a punch combination corresponding with the
numbers. Cus stands back, examining his ward at work.
                                                            
                       TEDDY
That's it. Nothing but bad
intentions.
                                                            

16.

                       CUS
Murderous intentions.
                                                            
                       TEDDY
Don't let up. Where's your guard?
Don't drop it, not even half an
inch. Let it come in the same
height as your shoulder, straight
across. Harder, yeah, see the
difference? Two, six, four!
                                                            
 
INT. CLASSROOM - DAY
                                                            
Tyson sits at his desk in the middle of a junior high
Pre-Algebra class. Two Black girls sitting near him whisper
to each other. Mike notes it and ignores them.
                                                            
 
INT. CATSKILL BOXING CLUB - DAY
                                                            
Teddy and Cus watch from the ring apron as Tyson sharpens
his defensive skills with a sparring partner.
                                                            
                       TEDDY
Bend. Bend at the waist. Slip
those shots, Mike. You gotta move
your head.
                                                            
Tyson dodges his sparring partner's onslaught. He dips and
weaves then gets caught with a single grazing shot.
                                                            
                       TEDDY
You see? Don't stop moving, keep
that head moving. You should have
moved the other way.
                                                            
 
INT. CLASSROOM - DAY
                                                            
The two Black girls go after Tyson.
                                                            
                       ONE GIRL
Psst... Hey, whitey...
                                                            
The girls giggle. Tyson shoots them an irritated glare.
                                                            
                       OTHER GIRL
Whitey... Whitey...
                                                            
                       BOTH GIRLS
      (chanting)
Whitey, whitey, whitey...
                                                            
 

17.

INT. CATSKILL BOXING CLUB - DAY
                                                            
Tyson rips across the speed bag with lightning hands,
drumming a furious rhythm.
                                                            
                       BOTH GIRLS (O.S., cont'd)
Whitey, whitey, whitey, whitey --
                                                            
 
INT. CLASSROOM - DAY
                                                            
                       TYSON
Shut up!
                                                            
The entire class turns to the outburst.
                                                            
                       TEACHER
Mike! What is the problem?
                                                            
 
INT. CATSKILL BOXING CLUB - DAY
                                                            
Tyson slowly unravels the protective cloth handwraps that
hold the bones in his fists so securely in place.
                                                            
 
INT. CLASSROOM - DAY
                                                            
                       TEACHER
Mike, this isn't the first time
you've interrupted my class like
this. You can go down and explain
your story to the V.P. Leave now.
                                                            
The entire class titters.
                                                            
 
INT. CATSKILL BOXING CLUB - DAY
                                                            
Tyson jumps rope in the eye of a leather blur; his feet
dance across the hardwood; he absorbs a blow from his
sparring partner; he unloads on the heavy bag. The handwraps
unravel until they fall off, tumbling through space.
                                                            
 
INT. CLASSROOM - DAY
                                                            
Tyson's peers watch him sulk toward the exit. One of the
Black girls untethers a final belt of laughter. He plucks up
an empty desk and flings it across the length of the
classroom, sending classmates diving to the floor. It dents
the far wall.
                                                            
 

18.

INT. DOVECOTE - DAY
                                                            
A sizeable wooden structure, overlooking an expanse of sky,
bound in chain-links. A pigeon settles on Tyson's fist,
allowing him to raise it aloft. A banging erupts from
beneath the hatch.
                                                            
                       KEVIN (O.C.)
Mike, get off the roof. Come eat.
                                                            
 
INT. CAMILLE'S KITCHEN - DAY
                                                            
The rag-tag family is crowded at the table. Cus sits at the
head with Teddy nearby. Next to Teddy sits his fiancť ELAINE
and her teenage sister SUSIE.
                                                            
                       CUS
What's the place like?
                                                            
                       TEDDY
It's a ground floor apartment in a
two-family house. We like it.
                                                            
                       ELAINE
Rent's low.
                                                            
Camille and Jay set the food out on the table.
                                                            
                       CAMILLE
And it's here in Catskill?
                                                            
Tyson and Kevin join the dinner party.
                                                            
                       ELAINE
Oh, close. It's just outside of
Catskill.
                                                            
Tyson plops down next to Susie and offers her a smile.
Plates of food are passed around. The table comes alive with
multiple overlapping dialogues.
                                                            
                       CAMILLE
So, Teddy, Elaine, you two have a
date in mind?
                                                            
                       ELAINE
We were thinking September.
                                                            
                       CAMILLE
Susie, honey, are you going to get
to be a bridesmaid for your big
sister?
                                                            

19.

Camille catches Susie with a mouthful of food. The young
girl smiles and nods.
                                                            
                       CUS
How'd everything go at the gym,
Teddy?
                                                            
                       TEDDY
Great. Everything was good. Greg,
Joey, and Andy --
                                                            
                       CUS
How was everything with Mike?
                                                            
                       TEDDY
Great. I was proud of everybody
today.
                                                            
A tray of biscuits comes around to Mike. He takes the last
two, leaving none for the boy -- GREG -- seated next to him.
                                                            
                       GREG
Mike, let me have one of yours.
                                                            
                       TYSON
Get your own.
                                                            
                       CAMILLE
Mike, there's no more left, and
you have two.
                                                            
                       CUS
What's the problem?
                                                            
                       GREG
Mike won't let me have a biscuit.
                                                            
                       CUS
See, Camille, I always tell you to
make more. You never make enough
food. We got all these mouths to
feed, and this is what happens.
                                                            
                       CAMILLE
I made enough. Mike, just give
Greg one of yours.
                                                            
                       CUS
Mike, eat up.
      (to Camille)
He's a growing boy, don't take
food from his mouth. Just make
more, like I ask, next time.
                                                            

20.

                       TEDDY
Greg, have mine.
                                                            
                       CUS
No, no. I won't finish mine. I
just took one to not be rude.
Here, Greg.
                                                            
Cus gives up his biscuit.
                                                            
                       GREG
Thanks, Cus...
                                                            
The table resumes eating in relative silence.
                                                            
 
INT. CAMILLE'S ENTRY WAY - NIGHT
                                                            
Elaine and Susie exchange departing hugs with Camille at the
door.
                                                            
                       CAMILLE
Nice to see you again, sweetheart.
                                                            
                       ELAINE
You too, Camille.
                                                            
 
INT. UPSTAIRS HALL - NIGHT
                                                            
Cus exits the bathroom. Teddy appears at the top of the
staircase.
                                                            
                       TEDDY
Cus, we're heading out. Gotta get
these girls home.
                                                            
                       CUS
It was nice having you over. We
miss you.
                                                            
                       TEDDY
Yeah. Cus, I wanted to talk with
you about the way you've been
treating Mike lately.
                                                            
                       CUS
What do you mean? I love the kid.
                                                            
                       TEDDY
Yeah, that's not what I mean. I
mean, I know. I can tell you love
the kid. It seems like, sometimes,
and I know the other boys can see
            (MORE)

21.

                       TEDDY (cont'd)
it, that you're playing favorites
with him.
                                                            
                       CUS
Bullshit. No.
                                                            
                       TEDDY
I mean... What was that downstairs
with the biscuits?
                                                            
                       CUS
What? I tell Camille, she refuses
to cook enough for everybody --
                                                            
                       TEDDY
No, Cus... no. The boys notice
when you do things like that. And
you think Mike doesn't notice? He
does.
                                                            
                       CUS
The hell you talkin' 'bout?
                                                            
                       TEDDY
I'm taking about discipline, Cus.
I'm talking about the main thing
we do here. What you did with me.
Our purpose. Think: you're raising
a child here. A troubled child. If
you always let him have his way...
                                                            
                       CUS
Telling me about the kid? You're a
kid. I don't like your tone right
now, Teddy. You tell me about
discipline? I disciplined you.
                                                            
                       TEDDY
I just said that. Mike's got to
have boundaries. He wants
something, you let him take it. He
screws up at school, you refuse to
suspend him from the gym. He wants
someone's biscuit, you let him
take --
                                                            
                       CUS
Hol-hold on. Hold on. Why would I
suspend him from the gym? From the
only thing that's ever been good
in his entire life?
                                                            

22.

                       TEDDY
Why?! That's what we've always
done with the other boys. Because
that's discipline. Cus, please,
there are more important things
going on with Mike right now than
boxing.
                                                            
Kevin jogs up the stairway.
                                                            
                       KEVIN
Everything all right?
                                                            
Cus scoffs at Teddy and clambers down the stairs. Kevin
shakes his head.
                                                            
                       KEVIN
What're you doin', Teddy?
                                                            
Teddy blows past Kevin on his way downstairs.
                                                            
 
INT. JACOBS' RESIDENCE - DAY
                                                            
Lorraine swings open the ornate front door. Cus and Tyson
are on the other side.
                                                            
                       LORRAINE
Hello, you two! Jimmy's in the
room already.
                                                            
 
INT. SCREENING ROOM - DAY
                                                            
JIM JACOBS, 50s, a balding and bespectacled white man in a
tweed jacket, locks a reel onto a film projector. Cus and
Tyson are stationed on a sofa in front of a large overhead
screen pinned against the wall.
                                                            
                       CUS
He's what we've been looking for
all this time, Jimmy.
                                                            
                       JIM
Certainly sounds like it.
      (to Mike)
So you're still undefeated, huh?
                                                            
                       TYSON
Yeah.
                                                            

23.

                       CUS
All wins by knockout for Christ's
sake! He's keeping me goin'.
                                                            
                       JIM
You know, Mike, I heard a rumor
that the kids at the amateur
tournament conjured up a myth that
you were the nephew of Sonny
Liston. How about that, Cus? We're
well on our way to Los Angeles in
'84.
                                                            
                       CUS
Hell, the gold medal is a bauble.
We're on our way to Larry Holmes,
that's what we're after.
                                                            
Black-and-white newsreel footage of a vintage boxing match
flickers on the screen. A Henry Armstrong fight.
                                                            
                       CUS
Look at him work. Perpetual
motion. You see how he overwhelms
his opponent, always coming
forward? That's a fighter. A
heavyweight applying those same
methods would be unbelievable.
                                                            
Henry Armstrong scores a knockout on screen.
                                                            
                       CUS
There it is. It's over. You see
that?
                                                            
Tyson nods. The next fight on the reel begins.
                                                            
                       CUS
The knockout. The single most
definitive end in all of sports.
There is no greater glory for true
combatants. Football, basketball,
baseball? Those are all just games
-- something you play. Boxing is
many things, but it is in no way a
game. You don't play boxing. It's
pure that way. You won't find a
sport closer to true human nature.
That's why it's the oldest sport.
Man has always had two fists and a
reason to fight. It's all on you,
the singular man, just like it is
in life. Hell, a basketball team
can combine to score over a
            (MORE)

24.

                       CUS (cont'd)
hundred points and still lose the
game. Because it's a damn game!
Happens all the time.
                                                            
The new fight on screen turns into an all-out slugfest.
                                                            
                       CUS (cont'd)
In boxing, you knock your opponent
out. Simple, primal, beautiful.
It's performance art; a ballet of
blood. Sugar Ray Robinson once
called it geometry, and I like
that. At it's best, it's for the
thinking man. It's high-speed
chess. I don't care if you hit a
home run, in the bottom of the
ninth, in game seven of the World
Series: If you've never known the
ancient glory of a knockout, then
I'm sorry, but you've never been
truly victorious.
                                                            
Another devastating knockout is scored on screen.
                                                            
 
INT. COLORADO SPRINGS GYMNASIUM - DAY
                                                            
A banner hanging from the rafters proclaims: "1982 NATIONAL
JUNIOR OLYMPICS TOURNAMENT." A boxing ring is planted in the
center of the gym. Spectators mingle between fights.
                                                            
 
EXT. COLORADO SPRINGS GYMNASIUM - BACK ALLEY - DAY
                                                            
Teddy Atlas leans against the building. Tyson, in amateur
boxing attire, projectile vomits onto the concrete.
                                                            
                       TEDDY
Let all that shit out if that's
what you got to do. It's just
nerves, let 'em be. If you weren't
nervous, there'd be something
wrong with you. It's a sign you're
ready to do damage. You're ready
to win.
                                                            
Tyson clears his mouth of the pea-colored goop and bounces
up and down the alleyway.
                                                            

25.

                       TYSON
You're Mike Tyson... They're
trying to take it from you...
Don't let 'em...
                                                            
Tyson shadowboxes as he anxiously paces.
                                                            
                       TEDDY
Keep moving, loosen up. That
motion will relieve all the
tension. Bounce on your toes.
                                                            
                       TYSON
You're the champ... They can't
take your title... You won't let
them... They want it, but they
can't touch you...
                                                            
                       TEDDY
You're the defending champ, Mike.
They're the ones who gotta worry.
                                                            
                       TYSON
You're Mike Tyson... You're Mike
Tyson...
                                                            
Tyson plants his feet and unloads a flurry into space.
                                                            
 
INT. COLORADO SPRINGS GYMNASIUM - BOXING RING - DAY
                                                            
Teddy leans over the ropes and pulls Tyson close.
                                                            
                       TEDDY
Fight smart, but like an animal.
Make him fight your fight.
                                                            
Teddy kisses his charge on the cheek and departs. Tyson,
alone in the corner, breathes in. SUPERIMPOSE a tiger's
facial structure and stripes over his visage. Tyson breathes
out sharply, and his human face returns.
                                                            
The bell rings. Tyson advances on his opponent like a
predator. He dips, weaves, and launches a savage left hook
that connects with his opponent's mandible.
                                                            
The opposing boxer stiffens and pitches backward. A gasp
from the crowd as two-hundred pounds of meat and bone slaps
the canvas. He's unconscious.
                                                            
The ringside timekeeper checks his watch: six seconds.
                                                            
 

26.

INT. DOVECOTE - DAY
                                                            
Tyson kisses a pigeon on the crown of its head. Birds swirl
about him in the makeshift cage.
                                                            
 
INT. CAMILLE'S KITCHEN - DAY
                                                            
Teddy unloads groceries for Camille. The telephone rings and
he picks up the receiver.
                                                            
                       TEDDY
      (into phone)
Hello? Yes. Uh-huh. No, he hasn't
told us anything.
      (to Camille)
Has Mike mentioned anything about
school?
                                                            
Camille shakes her head.
                                                            
                       TEDDY
      (into phone)
OK, well -- Well, thank you. Oh,
we'll be talking to him
immediately.
                                                            
Teddy hangs up the phone.
                                                            
                       TEDDY
Mike got himself suspended again.
Do you know where he is?
      (calling out)
Mike!
                                                            
                       CAMILLE
He was with the pigeons.
                                                            
Tyson enters the kitchen.
                                                            
                       TEDDY
Mike! Your school just called.
                                                            
Tyson shrugs his shoulders.
                                                            
                       TEDDY
What the hell's that supposed to
mean?
                                                            
                       TYSON
I don't know.
                                                            

27.

                       TEDDY
Look, I don't care what anyone
says, I don't want to see you in
the gym until you get yourself
back in school. Until your
suspension's up.
                                                            
                       TYSON
You can't do that!
                                                            
                       TEDDY
I just did it. If you're suspended
from school, then you're suspended
from the gym, and that's how it's
gonna be from now on.
                                                            
                       TYSON
Fuck that, Cus didn't say that!
                                                            
                       CAMILLE
Mike!
                                                            
                       TEDDY
Cus doesn't train you, I do!
                                                            
                       TYSON
Hell no, I'm training!
                                                            
                       CAMILLE
Mike, stop raising your voice.
                                                            
                       TYSON
Camille, mind your own fuckin'
business, shit!
                                                            
                       TEDDY
You son of a bitch, you talk --
                                                            
Cus enters.
                                                            
                       CUS
What the hell is all this
screaming about?
                                                            
                       TEDDY
I ain't training this little shit
any time soon. He's gotten his ass
suspended at school again, and
he's talkin' to Camille like he
ain't got no goddamn sense at all.
                                                            

28.

                       CUS
Just calm down. I'll make those
decisions. Now what's --
                                                            
                       TEDDY
Bullshit, Cus! He's suspended from
the gym and that's it!
                                                            
Cus' disposition freezes over.
                                                            
                       CUS
Oh, yeah?
      (to Mike)
Go upstairs.
                                                            
Tyson leaves the room.
                                                            
                       TEDDY
You're going to let him disrespect
her like that?
                                                            
                       CAMILLE
Both of you can stop this.
                                                            
Neither man acknowledges Camille's plea. They stand off like
gunfighters.
                                                            
                       CUS
You think you got that kind of say
in my house? I'm the man around
here. Who are you?
                                                            
Camille leaves the room, shaking her head.
                                                            
                       TEDDY
You're not being fair to anyone.
Including Mike.
                                                            
                       CUS
Don't worry about how I'm handling
the boy, he's my responsibility.
                                                            
                       TEDDY
You're ruining the boy. This shit
wouldn't fly with any of the other
kids and you know it!
                                                            
                       CUS
Mind you own damn business. G-get
out! Get the fuck out. Go back
back home to your pregnant wife
and worry about her!
                                                            

29.

Teddy strikes toward the exit.
                                                            
                       TEDDY
We'll see how Mike turns out with
you in his life.
                                                            
 
INT. CATSKILL BOXING CLUB - NIGHT
                                                            
Aspiring fighters sweat and bleed. Teddy coaches two young
boys in the main ring. Activity at the gym's front entrance
catches his attention.
                                                            
Cus strides in with Tyson in tow. They pay no
acknowledgement to Teddy. They move directly to a heavy bag
and get to work.
                                                            
 
EXT. TEDDY'S APARTMENT COMPLEX - NIGHT
                                                            
A station wagon rolls into the complex and parks. Teddy
exits the vehicle.
                                                            
 
INT. TEDDY'S KITCHEN - NIGHT
                                                            
Elaine, Susie, and a third SISTER sit at the table. The
front door unlocks. All three females rush to clear the
tears from their faces.
                                                            
                       ELAINE
Don't say nothin' to Teddy.
                                                            
Teddy creeps into the kitchen. Of course he overheard.
                                                            
                       TEDDY
Don't say nothin' about what?
                                                            
                       ELAINE
It's nothin', Teddy.
                                                            
Elaine rises from her seat. The bump in her belly has been
maturing for seven months.
                                                            
 
INT. TEDDY'S BEDROOM - NIGHT
                                                            
The third sister pulls Teddy inside the room.
                                                            
                       SISTER
I guess Susie -- She, um, she told
us... She said she saw Mike today.
                                                            

30.

                       TEDDY
What?
                                                            
                       SISTER
I don't know. I don't know. I know
that she was with him today,
around him, and, anyway, uh --
                                                            
                       TEDDY
What happened?
                                                            
                       SISTER
I don't...
                                                            
                       TEDDY
What?!
                                                            
                       SISTER
He... I think he just -- She said
Mike put his hands on her or
something.
                                                            
                       TEDDY
He put his -- How? Like touched
her?
                                                            
                       SISTER
Susie was crying. She told us that
she was with Mike and he tried
touching her, like groping her,
and he was telling her what he
wanted to do to her.
                                                            
 
INT. TEDDY'S LIVING ROOM - NIGHT
                                                            
Teddy bursts out of his room and lopes toward the front
door. Elaine, waiting nervously outside the bedroom, grabs
at his clothes as he zips by.
                                                            
                       ELAINE
Teddy don't --
                                                            
Teddy shrugs her off, barely breaking stride.
                                                            
 
EXT. CATSKILL BOXING CLUB - NIGHT
                                                            
Teddy's station wagon slides against the curb.
                                                            
 

31.

INT. TEDDY'S STATION WAGON - NIGHT
                                                            
Teddy's hand moves to the glove compartment and unearths a
.38 revolver. He flips open the chamber -- it's loaded.
                                                            
 
EXT. CATSKILL BOXING CLUB - NIGHT
                                                            
Teddy approaches the gym, stopping short of the entrance. A
taxi cab pulls up to the club. He instinctively ducks into
the shadow of the building.
                                                            
Someone exits the cab: Tyson.
                                                            
Teddy crouches amongst the darkness. The cab pulls away and
Tyson swaggers up to the building. Teddy springs from the
black and snatches Tyson by the collar, yanking the boy into
a nearby alcove.
                                                            
 
EXT. DARK ALCOVE - NIGHT
                                                            
Teddy presses the revolver to Tyson's temple.
                                                            
                       TEDDY
You piece of shit! You think
you're gonna do that to my family?
After the way I've treated you? I
will fucking kill you! That's my
family! My family! You understand,
you ungrateful piece of shit?
                                                            
Teddy stares into Tyson's eyes. The oversized teenager
retains an air of smugness.
                                                            
                       TEDDY
Make no mistake, if you ever put
your hands on my family again,
you'll be dead. Grab on Susie
again, you're dead. Touch anyone,
I blow your thick fucking head
open. There'll be no talking. No
bullshit. You'll just be dead.
                                                            
Teddy cocks back the hammer.
                                                            
                       TEDDY
Are we clear? Nod that you
understand what I'm telling you.
                                                            
Tyson nods his head. Teddy points the barrel at the sky and
pulls the trigger. Tyson collapses, clutching his ear.
                                                            

32.

                       TEDDY
We clear now? That's my family!
                                                            
Tyson runs off into the night. Teddy jogs back to his
station wagon and drives out of Tyson's life.
                                                            
TITLE OVER BLACK: CHAPTER II - THE RED GLOVES
                                                            
 
EXT. ALBANY CONVENTION CENTER (ESTABLISHING) - NIGHT
                                                            
SUPER: MARCH 6, 1985
                                                            
A poster displayed at the door lists the boxing matches
scheduled for the evening. One undercard match-up in
particular: HEAVYWEIGHTS - MIKE TYSON VS. HECTOR MERCEDES.
                                                            
 
INT. MURKY DRESSING ROOM - NIGHT
                                                            
A pair of D'Amato-trained ex-champions hold the collective
attention of Tyson's corner men. FLOYD PATTERSON, 50s, and
JOSE TORRES, 40s, stand and deliver with vaudevillian flair.
                                                            
                       JOSE
The tale of The Red Gloves...
                                                            
The amused trio of Kevin, assistant STEVE LOTT, 20s, and
cut-man MATT BARANSKI, 30s, leans forward in their seats.
                                                            
                       FLOYD
After you wear them the first
time, they become a part of you.
                                                            
                       JOSE
The gloves possess your fists. At
times you notice that they throw
punches your consciousness did not
demand.
                                                            
                       FLOYD
Eventually, the day comes that you
decide to hang them up. But you
find that you cannot simply take
off the red gloves.
                                                            
                       JOSE
No. Even after you quit, even if
you die, the red gloves continue
fighting. Forever.
                                                            
A bell sounds.
                                                            
 

33.

INT. ALBANY CONVENTION CENTER - BOXING RING - NIGHT
                                                            
Tyson bullies his opponent into the ropes. The crowd
encourages the onslaught. A left hook rouses a lake of sweat
from Mercedes' afro. The fluid flies over the audience and
splashes against the rear wall of the auditorium.
                                                            
Tyson hammers the ribs, ejecting the air from his opponent's
body. Mercedes folds down onto the canvas.
                                                            
 
INT. CAMILLE'S ENTRY WAY - NIGHT
                                                            
Tyson bursts through the door with Cus and Kevin behind. He
lassos Camille into a bear hug.
                                                            
                       CAMILLE
Congratulations!
                                                            
 
INT. CAMILLE'S ROOM - NIGHT
                                                            
Camille sets the bed. Cus enters quietly, shutting the door
behind him.
                                                            
                       CAMILLE
Where were you?
                                                            
                       CUS
Talking to Mike.
                                                            
They sit on the edge of the bed.
                                                            
                       CAMILLE
I'm proud of him. He's happy.
                                                            
Cus unaffectedly slides his arm around Camille.
                                                            
                       CUS
I gave him another book of poetry
as a gift for his first pro win.
Some old books on history I had,
too. An Alexander the Great one,
some others. He soaks 'em up. I
think he's learning better this
way. On his own time, things he's
interested in, no other kids. He's
a loner like me.
                                                            
                       CAMILLE
As long as he's learning.
                                                            

34.

                       CUS
He's just fine, Camille. Drives me
crazy sometimes, but...
                                                            
Camille rests her head on Cus' shoulder.
                                                            
                       CUS
Jimmy and Bill and I are gonna
keep him real busy with this fight
schedule, so, uh, I think -- I
think he's going to be all right.
                                                            
 
EXT. STREETS OF BROOKLYN - NIGHT
                                                            
Tyson and his crony RORY HOLLOWAY, 20s, Black, post up on a
street corner, drinking from forty ounce bottles of malt
liquor in brown paper bags.
                                                            
                       TYSON
Shit, Rory, we need some fuckin'
music over here.
                                                            
                       RORY
Why don't you go buy us a boom box
or something, then?
                                                            
                       TYSON
You got any money?
                                                            
                       RORY
You're the one with the job, pro
boxing now and shit.
                                                            
                       TYSON
Man, all that shit gets put away
in the bank for me.
                                                            
                       RORY
Well, go get your money.
                                                            
                       TYSON
Nah, it's put away. Fuck it, man,
I didn't get away from the
Catskills for the weekend to just
go right back.
                                                            
                       RORY
What you wanna do?
                                                            
Tyson downs his forty.
                                                            

35.

                       TYSON
They got boom boxes anywhere
around here?
                                                            
 
INT. APARTMENT BUILDING - NIGHT
                                                            
Tyson and Rory enter an elevator. Before the doors close, a
Black man rushes in to catch the ride.
                                                            
 
INT. ELEVATOR - NIGHT
                                                            
Tyson catches Rory's eyes and motions toward the man. Rory
nods. A veiny bicep cuts under the man's chin as Tyson pulls
him into a headlock. He slams the head against the wall to
discourage flailing; a corona of blood marks the paneling.
Rory plucks a crumpled ball of bills from the man's jeans.
                                                            
 
INT. APARTMENT HALLWAY - NIGHT
                                                            
The elevator doors slide open. Rory charges out. Tyson
remains inside to broaden the ring of blood on the wall with
another series of head slams. Rory runs back.
                                                            
                       RORY
The fuck you doin'? Let's go!
                                                            
Rory physically intervenes.
                                                            
                       RORY
Nigga, let's go!
                                                            
Tyson stops to watch their victim slump to the floor. Then
he and Rory sprint away.
                                                            
 
INT. TYSON'S BEDROOM - DAY
                                                            
A brand-new boom box rests on the dresser next to a
television set tuned to a Kung-fu movie. Tyson throws karate
chops with the actors on screen.
                                                            
 
INT. CAMILLE'S KITCHEN - DAY
                                                            
The phone rings stridently, stealing Camille's attention.
                                                            
                       CAMILLE
      (into phone)
Hello? Oh, hi, Jimmy.
                                                            

36.

A smile fades from Camille's lips.
                                                            
                       CAMILLE
OK, where is he? OK. OK, thank
you. Bye, Jimmy.
                                                            
She hangs up and takes a moment to collect herself.
                                                            
                       CAMILLE
      (calling out)
Mike!
                                                            
 
INT. HOSPITAL WAITING ROOM - DAY
                                                            
Jim rushes in with Tyson and Camille. They meet Bill, Doris,
and Lorraine.
                                                            
                       JIM
Any word? Anything?
                                                            
                       BILL
It's a form of pneumonia. He
collapsed at the convention, and
they brought him here.
                                                            
Lorraine and Doris take turns hugging Camille.
                                                            
                       BILL (cont'd)
It looks like they're going to
keep him here for a while. He's
been his old ornery self.
                                                            
                       CAMILLE
Can't we see him?
                                                            
                       JIM
Of course we can.
                                                            
                       BILL
Of course. Jim, go ahead and take
Camille in now.
                                                            
Jim offers his arm to Camille and escorts her away.
                                                            
                       BILL
Mike, Cus wanted me to tell you
that he needed to talk to you
alone.
                                                            
 

37.

INT. CUS' HOSPITAL ROOM - DAY
                                                            
Tyson enters alone.
                                                            
                       TYSON
Hey, Cus. How you doin'?
                                                            
                       CUS
Mike... I got to wake up again
this morning, didn't I?
                                                            
He approaches Cus' bedside.
                                                            
                       TYSON
Why'd you want to talk to me
alone?
                                                            
                       CUS
Because we always talk like this.
You know? Do you -- do you
remember, Mike, the tapes we
watched of Floyd when he fought
Sonny Liston? I had to carry Floyd
out of the ring both times we
faced him. That power Liston had.
The kind you can't teach.
                                                            
                       TYSON
Oh, I-I memorized the first part
of your favorite poem. I've been
meaning to tell you. "The time you
won your town the race/We chaired
you through the market-place;/Man
and boy stood cheering by,/And
home we brought you
shoulder-high."
                                                            
                       CUS
"To-day, the road all runners
come,/Shoulder-high we bring you
home,/And set you at your
threshold down,/Townsman of a
stiller town."
                                                            
                       TYSON
The next part. I'm not there yet.
                                                            
                       CUS
You'll get there. You will. Don't
you let me die a liar, Mike. I
told everyone you were gonna be
champ. You'll fight on. You'll
make them remember me.
                                                            

38.

                       TYSON
Nobody can forget you, Cus.
                                                            
                       CUS
You fight on, they'll remember.
Mike Tyson: Cus D'Amato's last
son, after Floyd and Jose. You'll
make me eternal. A prophet.
                                                            
                       TYSON
C'mon, Cus.
                                                            
                       CUS
I wish I can see you take it all
the way, but there's just not
enough time... time... I wish I
could be there, but there's just
not enough time. I wish I could --
I don't think -- I don't think I'm
going to be able to marry Camille
the right way, like I planned.
                                                            
Tyson ducks his head and covers his face. He places one hand
on Cus.
                                                            
                       CUS
Mike, it's going to be all right.
You're going to be a legend,
eternal. So we're... we're going
to be all right.
                                                            
 
EXT. CEMETERY - DAY
                                                            
An impressive crowd, draped in black, gathers around a chasm
in the earth. Floyd Patterson, Jose Torres, Kevin Rooney,
Jim Jacobs, and Mike Tyson stand alongside one another as
their mentor disappears into the ground.
                                                            
Aside, Bill, Doris, and Lorraine attempt to console Camille.
                                                            
 
INT. JACOBS' RESIDENCE - DAY
                                                            
Post-funeral gathering. Cus' loved ones mingle about. Tyson
sits on the couch between Jim and Jose.
                                                            
                       JIM
It's perfectly fine, Mike. We can
call it off and reschedule your
fight just like that, you know it.
As easy as that.
                                                            

39.

                       TYSON
Do you think that's what Cus
would've wanted?
                                                            
                       JIM
Honestly, no. He wouldn't want
anything to interfere with your
career, even this.
                                                            
Tyson leans his head on Jose's shoulder.
                                                            
                       TYSON
I really feel like taking my own
life right now. I do. If I had any
real guts, I'd just kill myself.
But I have no fucking heart.
                                                            
                       JOSE
No, no, no, nonsense. Stop that.
It's not weakness. Didn't you ever
see Cus cry?
                                                            
                       TYSON
Yeah... When Joe Louis died. And
last week, when he thought he
wasn't going to make it.
                                                            
                       JIM
It's your call, Mike. Whatever you
want to do is the right answer.
                                                            
 
INT. ATLANTIS HOTEL/CASINO - BOXING RING - NIGHT
                                                            
SUPER: MIKE TYSON VS. MICHAEL JACK JOHNSON
                                                            
The referee is administering a count to Tyson's fallen
opponent. Johnson rises, ready, and the boxers fall back
into action. Tyson wastes no time deploying an unholy right
hand that utterly destroys Johnson's face.
                                                            
TIME CUT
                                                            
The interviewer holds a microphone for Jim as the post-fight
goings-on buzz behind them.
                                                            
                       INTERVIEWER
Jim, is he gong to knock out
everybody?
                                                            
                       JIM
Well, we have a marvelous problem,
Steve, as I told you before the
fight. The marvelous problem is
            (MORE)

40.

                       JIM (cont'd)
that it's very difficult, uh, with
a kid who throws hydrogen bombs,
to get him experience. I mean
everyone states, "Well, why - why
don't you get him fights where
he'll go seven, eight, ten
rounds?" The problem, which
appears to be insurmountable, is
that he is one of the most
devastating punchers that I've
seen in the last ten years.
                                                            
 
INT. ATLANTIS HOTEL/CASINO - BOXING RING - NIGHT
                                                            
SUPER: MIKE TYSON VS. ROBERT COLAY
                                                            
A rocket left hook explodes on Colay's temple, prompting a
crown of sweat and blood to launch from his head. Colay
flops on the canvas. His airborne fluids rain down on him.
                                                            
 
EXT. STREETS OF CATSKILL - DAY
                                                            
Tyson jogs alone against an anthracite backdrop of steel and
concrete. His disciplined hands remain up in a boxer's
guard.
                                                            
 
INT. BOXING RING - NIGHT
                                                            
SUPER: MIKE TYSON VS. EDDIE RICHARDSON
                                                            
Tyson stalks Richardson and shoots a scorching left against
his chin. The force of the blow literally carries Richardson
through the air, half-way across the ring, depositing him on
his back.
                                                            
INSERT: A FAN'S T-SHIRT
                                                            
Homemade. The print on the cotton tee reads: "MIKE TYSON -
NEXT HEAVYWEIGHT CHAMPION"
                                                            
 
INT. FELT FORUM - BOXING RING - NIGHT
                                                            
SUPER: MIKE TYSON VS. SAMMY SCAFF
                                                            
Scaff peels himself off the canvas, but the referee waves
the fight to an end. Scaff's nose is torn from his face
along the left nostril. Crimson bubbles effervesce between
the separation as the defeated man exhales.
                                                            

41.

TIME CUT - POST-FIGHT INTERVIEW
                                                            
A microphone is held up to Tyson's gold-capped rictus.
                                                            
                       TYSON
I try to catch him right on the
tip of the nose, because I try to
push the bone into the brain.
                                                            
 
INT. CATSKILL BOXING CLUB - BOXING RING - DAY
                                                            
Tyson throws a furious punch combination into Kevin's
waiting mitts. The force drives Kevin backward across the
ring. He gives chase, bobbing and weaving all the way.
                                                            
 
INT. LATHAM COLISEUM - BOXING RING - NIGHT
                                                            
SUPER: MIKE TYSON VS. MARK YOUNG
                                                            
A zipping uppercut tosses Young back into the ring ropes and
then flat on his face. He's out cold.
                                                            
INSERT: SPORTS ILLUSTRATED COVER
                                                            
A smiling Tyson poses on the magazine cover. The banner
reads: "KID DYNAMITE!"
                                                            
 
INT. TYSONíS BEDROOM - NIGHT
                                                            
Tyson watches an old fight film flicker against a makeshift
screen on the wall. His pit bullish eyes concentrate like
lasers on the ancient combatants.
                                                            
 
INT. CIVIC CENTER - BOXING RING - NIGHT
                                                            
SUPER: MIKE TYSON VS. JAMES "QUICK" TILLIS
                                                            
Tillis uncorks a flurry aimed at Tyson's head. He crouches
unfathomably low and ducks, bobs, and weaves out of the path
of every shot with preternatural ease.
                                                            
TIME CUT
                                                            
Tillis whiffs a haymaker. Tyson seizes the opportunity and
gets full extension on a counter left that dumps Tillis on
the seat of his trunks.
                                                            
 

42.

INT. LOCKER ROOM - NIGHT
                                                            
Still wearing the sweat from a victory, Tyson addresses a
flock of reporters.
                                                            
                       TYSON
I just have this thing inside me
that wants to eat and conquer.
Maybe it's egotistical, but I
can't deny that it's in me.
                                                            
 
INT. CIVIC CENTER - BOXING RING - NIGHT
                                                            
SUPER: MIKE TYSON VS. MARVIS FRAZIER
                                                            
Tyson traps Frazier in a corner and unloads a torrent of
uppercuts. Frazier is rendered unconscious, but he remains
upright, propped against the turnbuckles. Tyson continues to
fire off on the helpless rag doll.
                                                            
                       TYSON (O.S.)
I don't want to be a tycoon, I
just want to conquer men and their
souls.
                                                            
 
INT. PRIVATE HOME - DAY
                                                            
Tyson watches the television sitcom "Head of the Class" from
the couch. Steve sits with him, visibly disinterested in the
program. Kevin enters.
                                                            
                       KEVIN
We gonna get back out there or
what? The day ain't over yet.
                                                            
Tyson ignores him, watches T.V.
                                                            
                       STEVE
Mike, you listening?
                                                            
                       KEVIN
Mike, I'm talking to you. Get your
ass up. We still got road work.
                                                            
A character played by Robin Givens appears on screen.
                                                            
                       KEVIN
Mike!
                                                            

43.

                       TYSON
Kevin, I'm trying to watch this
fuckin' show for Christ's sake.
                                                            
                       KEVIN
I don't give a damn what you're
trying to do. Not today. You're
not pulling this same shit today.
                                                            
                       STEVE
Mike, you know you got the
championship coming up in a few
weeks. Come on, you're gonna sit
in front of the T.V.?
                                                            
                       KEVIN
Fuck that, you want to be a jerk?
Fine.
                                                            
Kevin stomps out, shaking his head. Robin's scene ends, and
the episode cuts to commercial.
                                                            
                       TYSON
Fuck it. Let's do some road work.
                                                            
 
EXT. LONELY DESERT TRACT - NIGHT
                                                            
Tyson, hooded in a gray sweat suit, jogs along the desolate
landscape. Darkness prevails all around him.
                                                            
 
INT. ART GALLERY - NIGHT
                                                            
Folds of red velvet undulate ever so slowly. An unseen
pulley system creaks and lifts away the lavish theatre
curtain, revealing the on-stage gallery behind it.
                                                            
A neat square of fleshy caucasians are positioned center
stage. Tyson stands inside the enclosure of white bodies,
his face housed in a bronze helmet, tribal tattoos
bracketing his eyes. TREVOR BERBICK, 30s, towers in the
opposite corner. They unsheath their swords in unison.
                                                            
Metal clashes. The warriors seperate and circle. Berbick
swings, cuts air; Tyson counters and slices black skin.
Berbick's head drops back on the hinge the gash makes of his
neck, and a geyser of red paint erupts from the wound.
                                                            
The portraits on the gallery walls are repainted by the
ever-flowing gouts of red. Spectators applaud soullessly as
their tuxedos are splattered with paint. Teddy watches
amongst the rows of white faces -- no applause, no tuxedo.
                                                            

44.

Tyson spins away from Teddy's glare only to be decapitated
by the blade of a new warrior sneaking up behind him.
                                                            
 
INT. HOTEL BALLROOM - DAY
                                                            
Tyson is shaken from his slumber by Jim.
                                                            
                       JIM
Mike. Mike, wake up.
                                                            
Tyson lifts his head from Jim's shoulder. They are sitting
on the dais with other fight night personnel in the middle
of a packed pre-fight press conference.
                                                            
King is at the podium, addressing the media, his
salt-and-pepper hair standing on end.
                                                            
                       TYSON
This shit's boring, Jimmy.
                                                            
                       JIM
I know, but everybody can see you.
                                                            
King preaches to the crowd as if delivering a holy sermon:
                                                            
                       KING
Yes, sir! Yes, sir! The
twenty-year-old Tyson is tough,
bold, ready to fight! But, my man,
our champion, Trevor Berbick,
prince of the Jamaican isles and
conqueror of Ali, is in no way
ready to end his reign and
surrender his crown! This Saturday
night, November twenty-two,
nineteen-eighty-six, I swear to
the people: It's gonna be a
rumble!
                                                            
 
INT. LAS VEGAS HILTON - BOXING RING - NIGHT
                                                            
The two corners are summoned to center ring by referee MILLS
LANE. Tyson and Berbick meet half-way, with corner men in
tow, for the customary stare-down.
                                                            
                       MILLS
OK, when I tell you to break, just
stop punching and step back clean.
Any questions from the challenger
or chief second?
                                                            

45.

                       KEVIN
No.
                                                            
                       MILLS
Any questions from the champion or
chief second?
                                                            
Berbick's corner signals, "no."
                                                            
                       MILLS
All right, let's get it on! C'mon!
                                                            
SUPER: MIKE TYSON VS. TREVOR BERBICK
                                                            
                       T.V. COMMENTATOR (O.C.)
And we're ready. I don't know
about you, folks, but here at the
Las Vegas Hilton there is
electricity in the crowd. On the
line, the WBC heavyweight
championship of the world!
                                                            
All unnecessary persons file out of the ring. Tyson paces in
his corner, alone. Brow hooded, muscles flashing. The
capacity crowd swells. The bell rings.
                                                            
TIME CUT
                                                            
Between rounds. Berbick's trainer, ANGELO DUNDEE, old and
agitated, is screaming at his corner men. They hand him a
sponge, and he discharges water over his fighter's head in a
flimsy attempt to revive him. Over this chaos:
                                                            
                       KEVIN (O.C.)
OK, Mike, decent first round, but
you were head hunting in there,
you hear me? You're doing good,
just use the jab, stay calm. Body
shots, then the head. Then the
knockout will come on its own, all
right?
                                                            
The bell rings for round two. Tyson swarms Berbick. The
champion is overwhelmed by power-punches and falls flat on
his face. He springs up from the canvas. The fight resumes
and Tyson lands hooks at will. Berbick topples backward, as
if rifle-shot.
                                                            
Mills administers another count. Berbick attempts to stand,
but tumbles into the bottom ring rope instead. He tries to
rise for a second time, but stumbles across the canvas on
spaghetti-string legs and flops hard on his back.
                                                            

46.

It's over. Media men flood the ring. Tyson shrugs his
shoulders. Jim works his way through the bodies and receives
an unexpected kiss on the lips from Tyson. King slithers
over and showers the new champion with praise. The official
decision blares out from ring announcer CHUCK NULL.
                                                            
                       CHUCK NULL
Ladies and gentlemen, at two
minutes, thirty-five seconds into
the second round, referee Mills
Lane calls an end to the bout.
Your winner by TKO, and the new
WBC heavyweight champion of the
world... Mike Tyson!
                                                            
The crowd explodes. King grabs Tyson by the waist and hoists
him into the air. Flash bulbs wash over the new heavyweight
titlist as he raises those blood-splattered red gloves aloft
in victory.
                                                            
TITLE OVER BLACK: CHAPTER III - BLACK AS PITCH
                                                            
 
INT. CAMILLE'S ENTRY WAY - DAY
                                                            
Tyson explodes through the front door with his WBC belt. He
drags Camille into a bear hug. She holds her son.
                                                            
 
INT. DOVECOTE - DAY
                                                            
Tyson lets his winged companions peck at his golden belt.
                                                            
 
EXT. CEMETERY - DAY
                                                            
Tyson kneels at Cus' grave. He stretches the WBC strap
across the headstone. Camille watches from a distance.
                                                            
 
INT. CAMILLE'S LIVING ROOM - DAY
                                                            
Mother and son watch television together.
                                                            
                       TYSON
You know, I met a girl, Camille.
                                                            
                       CAMILLE
Did you? Who is she?
                                                            

47.

                       TYSON
I haven't met her in person yet.
I'm going to, though. Soon. She's
an actress. I saw her on T.V.
                                                            
Camille laughs.
                                                            
                       CAMILLE
Oh. Good luck, Mike. Can't wait to
meet her.
                                                            
                       TYSON
Thanks, I already called her -- I
mean, I called her publicist. She
scheduled a date for us to meet.
But I've been talking to her on
the phone some. She's nice.
                                                            
Camille stares queerly at her boy. Tyson laughs out loud at
the bewilderment on her face.
                                                            
 
INT. MODISH RESTAURANT - DAY
                                                            
Tyson sits alone at an intimate round on the dining floor.
His head perks up as he notices a waiter heading his way,
leading Robin Givens and her entourage of three.
                                                            
                       TYSON
Hello.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
Hi! So nice to finally meet you.
                                                            
Robin extends her hand to Tyson. She turns to her ritzy
guests.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
OK, um, well, this is my wonderful
mother, Ruth Roper...
                                                            
She looks more like her sister.
                                                            
                       ROBIN (cont'd)
My publicist, Jeanine...
                                                            
Outfitted in an overpriced pants suit. Stuffy and glacial.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
And, of course, Howard, my
mother's lawyer.
                                                            
A balding, craggy white man.
                                                            

48.

Tyson nods and waves politely, veiling his surprise. The
entourage barely returns the gesture.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
And, guys, this is the heavyweight
champion! Of the world!
                                                            
Robin unleashes a giddy giggle. The entourage apathetically
follows suit, and Tyson abides by the crowd.
                                                            
                       RUTH
Mr. Tyson, it was great to meet
you --
                                                            
                       TYSON
Great to meet you.
                                                            
                       RUTH
Of course. We're going to head
over to the bar now and leave you
two alone.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
All right, mother.
                                                            
The entourage disappears. The waiter approaches.
                                                            
                       WAITER
Could I start you two off with
something to drink?
                                                            
                       ROBIN
Oh, water's fine for now.
                                                            
                       TYSON
Uh, me too. Thank you.
                                                            
The waiter drops a pair of menus and dashes away.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
So, Mr. Tyson...
                                                            
                       TYSON
Yes.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
I was caught off guard when I
heard the heavyweight champion --
the strongest man in the world --
was after my number.
                                                            

49.

                       TYSON
Yeah... I'm a fan of your show.
I-I just knew I had to get in
touch, talk to you. Somehow.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
Well, I'm charmed and flattered.
So what looks good?
                                                            
                       TYSON
Steak always looks good.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
Thick, bloody steak. My kind of
man. I think I'll get -- maybe the
mahi-mahi?
                                                            
                       TYSON
What's mahi-mahi?
                                                            
Robin laughs at Tyson.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
It's fish, Michael. What are we
going to do with you?
                                                            
                       TYSON
I don't know. I-I guess you'll
just have to teach me these
things.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
That, I can do with ease. I'm a
good teacher.
                                                            
                       TYSON
I've always been a fast learner,
but I don't really have a history
of being the best student. No.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
Oh, don't worry. Robin Givens
never fails.
                                                            
                       TYSON
Whoa! My kind of girl.
                                                            
Robin's full lips spread into a shit-eating grin.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
Oh, yeah. I'll knock you out.
                                                            
She uncorks that girly giggle once more.
                                                            
 

50.

INT. HOTEL BALLROOM - DAY
                                                            
A press conference. Tyson scales the dais hand-in-hand with
Robin, prompting a cacophony to erupt from the media. Flash
bulbs blanket the couple in random white waves.
                                                            
 
INT. A GYM - NIGHT
                                                            
Kevin is incensed.
                                                            
                       KEVIN
Mike! We still got a goddamned
fight to train for!
                                                            
Tyson and Robin are locked in an embrace.
                                                            
                       KEVIN
Let's go!
                                                            
Robin stops Tyson's mouth and playfully shoves him back to
his training.
                                                            
 
INT. LAS VEGAS HILTON - BOXING RING - NIGHT
                                                            
Post-fight. Tyson and his corner await the decision.
                                                            
                       CHUCK NULL
All for the winner, now the
undisputed heavyweight champion...
"Iron" Mike Tyson!
                                                            
Tyson dons the triptych of jewel-encrusted belts.
                                                            
 
INT. JEWELRY STORE - DAY
                                                            
Robin models a gaudy necklace. Tyson nods his approval.
                                                            
 
INT. A GYM - NIGHT
                                                            
Tyson works the mitts with Kevin. He stops mid-flurry.
                                                            
                       TYSON
Hey, where's she going?! Where's
Robin going?
                                                            
Robin pokes her giggling little head back into the doorway.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
I'm just going to get a soda!
                                                            
 

51.

INT. PRIVATE HOME - NIGHT
                                                            
Tyson rests his head in Robin's lap. They watch a Kung-fu
movie together. She pets his close-cropped hair.
                                                            
 
EXT. ATLANTIS HOTEL/CASINO (ESTABLISHING) - NIGHT
                                                            
A dazzling vision of lights and anticipation.
                                                            
SUPER: MIKE TYSON VS. LARRY HOLMES - JANUARY 22, 1988
                                                            
 
INT. TYSON'S DRESSING ROOM - NIGHT
                                                            
The facade of Tyson's back is layered with networks of
overlapping muscle. They expand and contract in rhythm as he
fires a punch combination into the wall. His final strike
bores clean through, sending an explosion of wood and
plaster chips airborne.
                                                            
Tyson turns to the room filled with his corner men and media
personnel. They all stare, slack-jawed, in astonishment.
                                                            
                       TYSON
Sorry.
                                                            
 
INT. ATLANTIS HOTEL/CASINO - RINGSIDE - NIGHT
                                                            
Robin and Ruth, cackling merrily, are channeled into prime
seats by King.
                                                            
                       KING
What do you mean you two aren't
sisters? Oh, Miss Roper you must
have gotten started in grade
school, you look so young!
                                                            
A FEW ROWS BACK
                                                            
Bill guides Camille into a seat next to Doris, Lorraine, and
Jim. He takes his seat next to Jim.
                                                            
                       BILL
How have you been feeling?
                                                            
                       JIM
I'm fine. Let's just enjoy the
fight.
                                                            
 

52.

INT. ATLANTIS HOTEL/CASINO - BOXING RING - NIGHT
                                                            
Holmes probes with his jab, dancing on his toes. The crowd
cheers. Tyson slips a jab and shocks the arena with a right
hand that splatters his opponent across the canvas.
                                                            
Bill leaps out of his seat to applaud.
                                                            
Holmes hops up. The crowd calls for blood. Tyson obliges
with a combination. The unsteady challenger topples again
but is brought back to his feet by sheer will.
                                                            
Robin and Ruth clap and chat with King.
                                                            
Tyson unloads his arsenal. Holmes' head is wrung again and
again and nearly twisted around, as if demonically
possessed, by an infernal red right hand.
                                                            
Holmes flops hard. The referee waves the bout over.
                                                            
 
INT. HOTEL BEDROOM - NIGHT
                                                            
The phone on the nightstand shatters the silence,
interrupting Robin's slumber.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
      (into phone)
Hello?
                                                            
 
INT. LOFT BEDROOM - NIGHT
                                                            
Tyson is alone in the bed with the telephone to his ear.
                                                            
                       TYSON
      (into phone)
Babe, what you doin'?
                                                            
INTERCUT BETWEEN MIKE AND ROBIN
                                                            
                       ROBIN
I'm sleeping, Michael, what do you
think?
                                                            
                       TYSON
Sorry, babe. I can't sleep.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
Why not?
                                                            
                       TYSON
I don't know. How was your day?
                                                            

53.

                       ROBIN
Very long. Shooting took forever.
                                                            
                       TYSON
Oh, I'm sorry. Robin?
                                                            
                       ROBIN
What?
                                                            
                       TYSON
Robin...
                                                            
Robin smiles. She knows what's coming.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
Yes, Michael?!
                                                            
                       TYSON
Are you ready to marry me yet?
                                                            
                       ROBIN
Michael, why do we always have to
have this conversation at three in
the morning when we're miles
apart?
                                                            
                       TYSON
You're avoiding the question. Are
you ready?
                                                            
                       ROBIN
I need to be on set in a few
hours, dear. You can propose to me
later when I'm actually awake.
                                                            
                       TYSON
Robin, I love you.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
I love you, too. Good night, OK?
                                                            
                       TYSON
Sweet dreams.
                                                            
They both hang up. Robin buries her head into the pillow.
Her phone promptly rings again; she can't help but giggle.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
      (into phone)
Yes?
                                                            

54.

                       TYSON
      (into phone)
Are you ready now?
                                                            
                       ROBIN
I miss you, Michael, and I will
see you in two days. Tell me you
miss me.
                                                            
                       TYSON
I miss you.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
OK, I love you, good night.
                                                            
                       TYSON
Good night.
                                                            
Robin hangs up. Again, almost immediately, the phone
screams. She bolts up in bed and lifts the receiver.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
      (into phone)
OK, now I'm ready.
                                                            
                       TYSON (O.S.)
What?!
                                                            
Robin giggles madly.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
I'm ready!
                                                            
 
INT. MUNICIPAL BUILDING CHAMBER - DAY
                                                            
Tyson and Robin stand before a municipal court judge. Steve
stands to Tyson's side as his best man; Ruth flanks her
daughter. The newlyweds seal their nuptials with a kiss.
                                                            
 
INT. HELMSLEY PALACE HOTEL - LIBRARY ROOM - DAY
                                                            
A wedding reception. The string quartet strums a love
ballad. Swarms of guests mingle about. Jim scours the hors
d'oeuvre display with Tyson.
                                                            
                       JIM
Mike, we're all very happy for
you, really.
                                                            
                       TYSON
Great. Then what's wrong?
                                                            

55.

                       JIM
Well, there's nothing wrong, Mike.
We're just concerned. I mean, we
are your family. You couldn't have
called? It would have been no
trouble to fly --
                                                            
                       TYSON
I'm sorry, Jimmy. I just got so
excited when she said "yes," we
just didn't think. We're kids in
love. I just had to marry her
right then, right there. I mean,
look at her.
                                                            
Tyson's eyes drift across the room to where Robin and Ruth
are entertaining their upscale acquaintances.
                                                            
                       JIM
Yes, but we're a little worried.
We want to protect you. Fact is,
she's only been a part of your
life for a few months now, and --
Mike, umm, is there a premarital
arrangement here?
                                                            
                       TYSON
What?
                                                            
                       JIM
Of any kind. Are you protected?
                                                            
                       TYSON
Do you have one with Lorraine?
                                                            
Jim concedes.
                                                            
                       TYSON
I'm married because I'm in love.
                                                            
ACROSS THE ROOM
                                                            
A semi-circle consisting of Bill, Doris, Lorraine, Floyd,
Jose, and Jose's wife RAMONA.
                                                            
                       BILL
So she calls me. She takes it upon
herself to call me a day after
their first ceremony --
                                                            
                       RAMONA
First ceremony?
                                                            

56.

                       BILL
Oh, yeah, they forgot to obtain a
marriage license when they eloped.
                                                            
                       LORRAINE
They had their religious ceremony
then came back here and had to get
it done legally at the, uh...
                                                            
                       DORIS
The courthouse by City Hall.
                                                            
                       RAMONA
Oh, really?
                                                            
                       BILL
Yeah, they end up getting married
there, and so, the next day, Robin
calls me at my office. "Hello." I
say hi. Then right off the bat she
tells me, "I just wanted to call
and let you know that Michael and
I are married now." "Yes, I know,
I know, of course." "And I'm
calling to tell you that I'm Mrs.
Mike Tyson, and I'm taking over my
husbands affairs."
                                                            
                       JOSE
Just like that?
                                                            
                       BILL
That's how she said it. In that
tone. I couldn't believe it.
                                                            
                       RAMONA
You know, I believe it. I was
talking to her mother earlier.
                                                            
                       LORRAINE
Ruth.
                                                            
                       RAMONA
Ruth, yes. Mothers and daughters
are just alike, and tell Jimmy and
tell Mike himself: that is the
woman they're going to have to
contend with from now on. Oh,
yeah. That woman is not going to
sit idly by while her daughter is
married to the biggest commodity
in all of sports.
                                                            

57.

ANOTHER CORNER OF THE ROOM
                                                            
Robin, Ruth, and their acquaintances are interrupted by
Tyson and Rory. Tyson slips his arms around his wife's waist
and plants a kiss on her cheek.
                                                            
                       MALE ACQUAINTANCE
Well, congratulations, champ!
You're quite the lucky man.
                                                            
                       TYSON
Thank you very much. Yes, I am.
                                                            
                       FEMALE ACQUAINTANCE
Well, so what do you think, Mike?
How many grandchildren do you two
plan to give Ruth?
                                                            
                       TYSON
A ton. A million. As many as
Robin's willing to bear. You know,
we already got the first one on
the way.
                                                            
Rory guffaws. Tyson spreads his paw over Robin's stomach.
The circle of upscale acquaintances are taken aback.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
Michael...
                                                            
                       MALE ACQUAINTANCE #2
Well, congratulations!
                                                            
                       FEMALE ACQUAINTANCE
Robin! Really?
                                                            
Robin flushes with embarrassment, forcing a smile.
                                                            
                       TYSON
Sorry, babe, I couldn't help it.
      (to everyone)
We're not sure if it's a boy or
girl yet, but, either way, we
already like the name D'Amato.
                                                            
                       FEMALE ACQUAINTANCE #2
Oh. How unique.
                                                            
                       TYSON
All right, Rory, let's leave these
party animals alone.
                                                            

58.

HORS D'OEUVRE STATION
                                                            
Bill and Doris are at one end of the display. Robin accosts
the couple.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
Excuse me, Bill?
                                                            
He turns to her, surprised.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
Thanks so much for coming. Are you
enjoying everything?
                                                            
                       BILL
Everything's wonderf--
                                                            
                       ROBIN
Great, umm, I just wanted to make
sure you didn't forget that I'd
like to see the contract you have
with Michael.
                                                            
                       BILL
Sure. As soon as possible, I'll
send you a typical New York State
contract exactly the same as the
one we have with Mike.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
No, I don't want to see a typical
contract. I want your contract. I
need to know how much money you're
making for my husband.
                                                            
                       BILL
      (calling out)
Mike, may I speak with you?
                                                            
Tyson spins around toward the voice. Bill approaches with
Robin trailing close behind.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
Tell him, Michael. You tell him
what I want -- we want. We need
those papers we spoke about.
                                                            
                       TYSON
All right.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
Tell him like we talked about.
Michael --
                                                            

59.

                       TYSON
Please! Give us a minute.
                                                            
Robin stomps away. Bill puts his arm around Tyson.
                                                            
                       TYSON
I'm sor--
                                                            
                       BILL
Mike, listen: I'll give you any
papers you want. You know that.
                                                            
                       TYSON
I know.
                                                            
                       BILL
But it's your business. I want you
to know that any time you want any
papers, for any purpose, I'll give
them to you directly.
                                                            
                       TYSON
It's just -- Robin is new, I know.
She just wants to be part of the
family. I want her to be part of
our family. Part of the team,
that's all.
                                                            
                       BILL
Any time. Any time you want
papers, contracts, anything. You
just ask me, and I'll give them to
you personally.
                                                            
 
EXT. TYSON'S CASTLE - DAY
                                                            
An army of movers bustle in and out of the breathtaking
behemoth of a home. It is literally an American castle. A
brand-new 1989 Rolls-Royce Corniche glides up to the
residence. Tyson exits the automobile and saunters toward
the front door.
                                                            
 
INT. TYSON'S CASTLE - ENTRY HALL - DAY
                                                            
Robin guides a pair of movers through the palace.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
OK, OK, OK. Through here, please.
Careful! Yeah, the corner.
                                                            

60.

The movers disappear into another room. Robin's eye bears
the dark semblance of a fading contusion. Enter Tyson.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
Michael, I need a break.
                                                            
She throws her arms around her husband. Movers bustle about
behind them.
                                                            
                       TYSON
Go sit down. Let the movers do
their jobs.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
No way, there's still a ton of
stuff to bring in - Oh! Your
trophy room is done!
                                                            
                       TYSON
They brought all that in already?
                                                            
                       ROBIN
Yup. I had them set it up first.
                                                            
                       TYSON
That's why I love you so much.
Thank you, Mrs. Tyson.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
You're welcome, Mr. Tyson.
                                                            
                       RUTH (O.C.)
Robin!
                                                            
                       ROBIN
Yes?
                                                            
Ruth enters.
                                                            
                       RUTH
Oh, hi, Mike.
      (to Robin)
Honey, why isn't that chandelier
up in the dining room?
                                                            
                       ROBIN
Oh, God.
                                                            
                       RUTH
We must have told them a half an
hour ago.
                                                            

61.

                       ROBIN
Let me go talk to the guy.
                                                            
Robin starts for the front door.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
Michael, go look at your room. See
if you like it.
                                                            
Tyson advances down the hall. His eyes fall on an oversized
spray of Asiatic flowers.
                                                            
                       RUTH (O.C.)
Those are a welcoming gift from
Don King. Beautiful, aren't they?
                                                            
Tyson checks the card on the flowers then continues on,
mesmerized by the splendor of his new home.
                                                            
                       TYSON
Wow...
                                                            
 
INT. TROPHY ROOM - DAY
                                                            
A ballroom reminiscent of the art gallery from the dream
sequence. Life-size statues of legendary men deliniate a
pathway: Alexander the Great, Genghis Khan, etc. It leads to
a lighted display case housing Tyson's innumerable
pugilistic awards.
                                                            
 
INT. ART GALLERY - NIGHT
                                                            
The red curtain draws open. Tyson's decapitated head and
armor-clad body are strewn across a gulf of red paint. A
disquieting crack echoes. The stage floor splits apart and
swathes of fabric flame roar up through the fissure.
                                                            
 
INT. MIKE & ROBINíS BEDROOM - NIGHT
                                                            
A shrill telephone ring jolts Robin awake. Tyson stirs
beside her. She gropes at the nightstand.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
      (into phone)
Hello? Uh, hi. Yeah. Oh, he's not,
um, not here. He's not in right
now. Uh-huh. Oh, my God. Oh, I'm
so sorry. Certainly. I'll let him
know, uh, we'll see you tonight?
Thank you for calling, Bill. Bye.
                                                            

62.

Robin steels herself.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
Michael, sweetheart, wake up.
                                                            
Tyson grunts.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
Baby, Bill just called.
                                                            
                       TYSON
Yeah...
                                                            
                       ROBIN
He called. Sweetie, I'm sorry, he
just told us that... that Jimmy
didn't make it.
                                                            
                       TYSON
What?
                                                            
                       ROBIN
He's gone, babe. He passed away in
the hospital just now. He didn't
make it, honey. I'm so sorry.
                                                            
His eyes develop a glossy rind.
                                                            
                       TYSON
What...?
                                                            
 
INT. JACOBS' RESIDENCE - NIGHT
                                                            
Mourners mill about. Tyson sleepwalks toward Lorraine. They
wrap each other in a tight embrace.
                                                            
                       TYSON
Lorraine, I'm sorry. I didn't
know. I didn't know.
                                                            
                       LORRAINE
Honey, he didn't want anybody to
know.
                                                            
TIME CUT
                                                            
Tyson falls into Jose's arms.
                                                            
                       TYSON
You want to take a walk with me?
                                                            
 

63.

EXT. STREET - NIGHT
                                                            
Tyson and Jose ease down the sidewalk.
                                                            
                       JOSE
What's on your mind, Mike?
                                                            
                       TYSON
Love and trust are two different
things, you know? I love Robin,
but I can't trust her. Not yet,
you know? I don't know. I trust
all youse guys: you, Kevin, Jimmy,
Camille. But it was a long time
before I even trusted Cus.
                                                            
                       JOSE
You're still a kid. Twenty-two
years old. Most of those feelings,
I had something similar at your
age.
                                                            
Tyson nods.
                                                            
                       TYSON
Fuckin' leukemia, man?
                                                            
Jose nods.
                                                            
                       TYSON
Life is shit, man. One minute
you're here, the next you're gone.
                                                            
 
INT. JEWISH TEMPLE - DAY
                                                            
Jim's casket rests at the base of the altar. Tyson sobs in
the front pew. Bill, Doris, Lorraine, Floyd, Jose, Ramona,
Camille, Matt, and Steve are all with him. Robin and Ruth
are absent.
                                                            
 
INT. MERRILL LYNCH OFFICES - DAY
                                                            
Ruth and Robin, impressively dressed and armed with a black
briefcase, promenade up to a Merrill Lynch official.
                                                            
                       OFFICIAL
Welcome. Might I help you ladies
with something today?
                                                            

64.

                       ROBIN
Yes, thank you. Um, we'd like to
make a hefty withdrawal.
                                                            
Both women grin.
                                                            
                       RUTH
A withdrawl.
                                                            
 
INT. JEWISH TEMPLE - DAY
                                                            
Tyson leans over the head of the casket and places a kiss on
the surface of the lid.
                                                            
 
INT. MERRILL LYNCH OFFICES - DAY
                                                            
Robin rises out of her seat.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
My money!
                                                            
                       OFFICIAL
I'm sorry, there's really nothing
I can do here. The trust account
is in your husband's name. It has
specifically been set up --
                                                            
                       RUTH
We have the power-of-attorney
papers right here. They're
perfectly authorized.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
Mr. Tyson has clearly signed them.
                                                            
                       OFFICIAL
I'm sorry, Ms. Givens, but, even
with the papers, I can't grant you
access --
                                                            
                       ROBIN
Mrs. Tyson.
                                                            
                       OFFICIAL
Excuse me?
                                                            
                       RUTH
Mrs. Tyson.
                                                            
 

65.

INT. JEWISH TEMPLE - DAY
                                                            
An assembly of pallbearers -- Tyson included -- move into
position around Jim's casket.
                                                            
 
INT. MERRILL LYNCH OFFICES - DAY
                                                            
Mother and daughter are standing, poised to storm out. A
pair of security guards stand by.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
This is unbelievable.
                                                            
                       RUTH
Ridiculous, really.
                                                            
                       OFFICIAL
There's nothing I can do --
                                                            
                       ROBIN
Bullshit, OK? We'll be back with
my husband.
                                                            
Robin and Ruth strike for the exit. Without turning back
around:
                                                            
                       ROBIN
We're going to take our money out
of here.
                                                            
 
INT. JEWISH TEMPLE - DAY
                                                            
The pallbearers ease down the aisle, holding Jim's casket
high overhead. Pews empty in their wake.
                                                            
 
INT. BEVERLY HILTON HOTEL - BANQUET ROOM - DAY
                                                            
Post-funeral gathering. Tyson is tucked away in a corner. A
shadow falls over him. He lifts his head to the source of
the darkness: it's Don King. The shock-haired promoter
places a sympathetic hand on Tyson's shoulder.
                                                            
                       KING
I come with a heavy heart and
deepest sympathies for your great
loss, my friend.
                                                            
Tyson stands to shake King's hand but gets roped into a hug.
                                                            

66.

                       KING
How have you been? Is there
anything I can do?
                                                            
                       TYSON
No, thank you. Ask Lorraine. I
think being here is enough.
                                                            
                       KING
Oh, of course. A great man of the
sport like Mr. Jacobs, it would be
a crime not to come and pay my
respects. It's the least I could
do, really. So how are your wife
and mother-in-law? I haven't seen
those stunning young women.
                                                            
                       TYSON
They couldn't make it.
                                                            
                       KING
Oh, really?
                                                            
Tyson nods. An awkward beat passes.
                                                            
                       KING
Be sure to give them my best. You
know how much I respect and admire
them. They truly are a unique and
wonderful pair.
                                                            
                       TYSON
Yeah, yeah, I can, uh -- I only
hope some of their class rubs off
on me.
                                                            
King bellows out a deep and hearty guffaw.
                                                            
                       KING
Very nice, champ. So tell me: What
are your plans for your
professional future? What's next
for the great Mike Tyson?
                                                            
                       TYSON
I'll keep fighting.
                                                            
                       KING
Of course. Good, good.
                                                            
                       TYSON
People on the streets run up to
me, ask me why I'm not fighting
Spinks. Am I "afraid of Spinks."
            (MORE)

67.

                       TYSON (cont'd)
It's the biggest fight out there,
everybody knows. Jimmy wanted to
see it happen, so that's next.
                                                            
                       KING
You don't have to jump into
anything. Take your time. A break
after this tragedy isn't a bad
idea. Spinks will always be there.
You're the undisputed champion, he
needs you more than you need him.
                                                            
                       TYSON
It's all I know. I need to fight.
                                                            
                       KING
Well, a fight is a fight. Anyone
could get you a fight. I could get
you a fight. You know what? I
could set up five fights for you.
Easy challengers, no problem.
Something like five million each.
Five million dollars for each
fight that won't go past a few
rounds. If fighting is all you
want, I could pull that together
for you in no time.
                                                            
Tyson shrugs his shoulders.
                                                            
                       TYSON
No, it's gonna be Spinks. For
Jimmy. Why should I take five easy
fights when I could make the same
money with one easy fight?
                                                            
King chuckles.
                                                            
                       KING
That, my friend, is why you are
the champion.
                                                            
 
INT. TYSON'S CASTLE - ENTRY HALL - NIGHT
                                                            
The house has become a home, furnishing completed.
Shimmering marble floors. Crystal chandeliers. Paintings in
gilt frames.
                                                            
 

68.

INT. TYSON'S GARAGE - NIGHT
                                                            
A black Mercedes-Benz, an armada of Bentleys, and too many
muscled foreign imports to count.
                                                            
 
INT. TYSON'S CASTLE - DINING HALL - NIGHT
                                                            
A stretched mahogany table with ebony inlay is set to seat
sixteen. A Baccarat chandelier is suspended overhead. Gold
leaf flecks the ceiling.
                                                            
 
INT. TYSON'S CASTLE - LIVING QUARTERS - NIGHT
                                                            
A baby grand piano is surrounded by Louis XV chairs. Ruth
Roper is curled into the white leather sofa accented by
tiger skin throw pillows, sipping a chilled glass of
Chardonnay. Enter Robin.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
Mommy, I'm going to sleep.
                                                            
                       RUTH
I'll be up a little longer. It's
still too early for me.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
Well, as usual, I'm beat. Good
night.
                                                            
 
INT. TYSON'S CASTLE - KITCHEN - NIGHT
                                                            
Ruth drops her wine glass in the sink and picks up the
telephone. She shuffles through a Rolodex on the counter.
                                                            
 
INT. CAMILLE'S KITCHEN - NIGHT
                                                            
Camille enters in bedtime garb to stop the insistent
ringing.
                                                            
                       CAMILLE
      (into phone)
Hello?
                                                            
INTERCUT BETWEEN RUTH AND CAMILLE
                                                            
                       RUTH
      (into phone)
Hi! Camille Ewald? This is Ruth
Roper, Mike's mother-in-law.
                                                            

69.

                       CAMILLE
Oh, hi. How are you?
                                                            
                       RUTH
I'm just fine, dear. How are you?
                                                            
                       CAMILLE
I'm well. How are the kids doing?
Is Mike there?
                                                            
                       RUTH
Yeah, yeah, they're great, you
know? Young and in love. But
they just went to bed.
                                                            
                       CAMILLE
OK.
                                                            
                       RUTH
OK? Yeah, you see, Camille, the
reason I'm calling is that I'd
like to confer with you about
something if you have a sec.
                                                            
                       CAMILLE
OK.
                                                            
                       RUTH
OK? Well, as you may know, all of
Mike's expenses are now paid
through the company I've formed
for him, Mike Tyson Enterprises.
M'kay? And I've noticed, now, that
for the past few years, Mike has
been paying your house expenses.
The electricity, phone bill,
repairs -- all Mike.
                                                            
                       CAMILLE
Yes. Jimmy, God rest his soul, set
that up after Mike started earning
large purses from boxing.
                                                            
                       RUTH
Right, well, it is costing him
thousands of dollars every year to
pay for your home, so I was just
making sure that it was all set up
in your will for Mike to
eventually inherit your estate.
                                                            
                       CAMILLE
I-I-I don't have a will.
                                                            

70.

                       RUTH
Oh. Well, I also wanted to ask if
you knew why the burden has been
placed squarely on Mike's
shoulders? Like, the other
fighters from your late partner's
gym, Jose and Floyd Patterson, why
don't they help out with the
expenses on your home?
                                                            
                       CAMILLE
Floyd and Jose never lived here.
We raised Mike here. He's my son.
Excuse me, I don't like how you're
speaking to me.
                                                            
                       RUTH
I don't mean any disrespect,
Camille, I'm just trying to get to
the bottom of this. Now, if your
"son" isn't inheriting your house,
we really see no reason for him to
continue supporting you this way.
                                                            
                       CAMILLE
Let me talk to Mike.
                                                            
                       RUTH
He's not available.
                                                            
                       CAMILLE
You said he was there. You said he
just went to sleep.
                                                            
                       RUTH
I hardly think we need to bother
him for --
                                                            
                       CAMILLE
He'll get up for this.
                                                            
                       RUTH
Camille, we will be canceling
payment on your debts --
                                                            
                       CAMILLE
I have to go.
                                                            
                       RUTH (cont'd)
... from Mike's money if you
refuse to do something as simple
as leave him the home he is
working to pay for.
                                                            

71.

                       CAMILLE
Good bye.
                                                            
Camille hangs up her phone.
                                                            
 
INT. MIKE & ROBIN'S BEDROOM - NIGHT
                                                            
Robin slides into bed with her husband. Tyson rests his head
on her chest.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
What?
                                                            
                       TYSON
Nothing.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
Have you talked to Don?
                                                            
                       TYSON
Don King?
                                                            
Robin pets Tyson's head.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
Uh-huh.
                                                            
                       TYSON
Hell no.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
He's really a fascinating man. I
kind of admire some of the things
he's done with his life.
                                                            
                       TYSON
What? Manslaughter?
                                                            
                       ROBIN
Shut up. No. He's built himself
into the best at what he does, not
to mention he recognizes your
talent. And, unlike some other
managers I know, he actually has
nice things to say about your
family. My mom really likes him.
He's a charmer. Why did you say
manslaughter?
                                                            
                       TYSON
Because he manslaughtered
somebody.
                                                            

72.

                       ROBIN
Are you serious?
                                                            
                       TYSON
He was locked up something like
three years for it. Stomped some
boy out. Stomped his ass to death.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
I knew he had been in prison when
he was young, but --
                                                            
                       TYSON
He's a sly street nigga from
Cleveland, baby; a numbers runner.
Nothing more.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
Michael, don't speak that way.
                                                            
                       TYSON
What way?
                                                            
                       ROBIN
Like you're a classless thug.
Anyway, he wants to talk to you
about boxing. I think you should.
                                                            
                       TYSON
Cus didn't like him.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
Who?
                                                            
Tyson speaks up, as if Robin didn't hear.
                                                            
                       TYSON
Cus.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
Well, you should think about
hearing what he has to say. He
seems like he's generally a good
guy, and he is the best, isn't he?
                                                            
                       TYSON
I guess. If you keep a snake in
the room with the lights on, you
can control him.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
What does that even mean?
                                                            

73.

                       TYSON
He wants to make money off me.
Another person with his hands out.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
It's business, Michael. Of course
he wants to make money. You're
gonna make a ton, too. That's
business. That's how business
works. It's the very definition of
the word. You probably don't know
that because you've always been
stuck with Bill Cayton.
                                                            
                       TYSON
How's about we don't start dumping
shit on Bill again? He doesn't
have any problems with you --
                                                            
                       ROBIN
Whatever, Michael. You can have
Bill as your manager, and Don be
your promoter on the same fight.
You're your own boss.
                                                            
                       TYSON
I know that.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
Good. I know you loved Jimmy, but
you don't have that relationship
with Bill. You don't owe him
anything. He's not Jimmy. Just
think about it.
                                                            
A pregnant beat.
                                                            
                       TYSON
I'll at least go talk to Don King.
                                                            
 
INT. KING'S MANSION - ENTRY WAY - DAY
                                                            
A foreign housemaid draws the front door open, revealing
Tyson on the other side. He enters the opulent estate, which
is harrowing in its gaudiness.
                                                            
                       TYSON
Hello.
                                                            
King materializes, descending from a winding staircase on
the opposite end of the salon. He jogs over to greet Tyson
with all the enthusiasm in the world.
                                                            

74.

                       KING
"Iron" Mike Tyson! Heavyweight
champion of God's green earth!
Welcome to the King's palace, my
friend. How are you?
                                                            
King clutches Tyson's paw in a vigorous handshake.
                                                            
                       TYSON
OK. Pretty good.
                                                            
                       KING
Is there anything I can get you,
sir? How do you like my palace?
                                                            
                       TYSON
No, thanks. I'm fine. The house is
very nice. Beautiful. Very.
                                                            
King slips his arm around Mike.
                                                            
                       KING
Step into my office, boss.
                                                            
 
INT. KING'S MANSION - STUDY - DAY
                                                            
King perches behind an ornate oak desk.
                                                            
                       KING
Have a seat, brotha. Cigar?
                                                            
Tyson politely shakes his head and eases into a high-backed
chair. King ignites a Cuban cigar.
                                                            
                       KING
I forgot to ask, how are the
beautiful women in your life? Your
wife and mother-in-law?
                                                            
Tyson examines his surroundings. An expansive library fills
the wall to his left; to his right, a manicured fireplace
can barely contain a searing blaze.
                                                            
                       TYSON
Good. A little frazzled by fame
these days, but we have each
other.
                                                            
King exhales exhaust fumes of smoke from his motor mouth.
                                                            

75.

                       KING
Wonderful. Business now. Mike, I
wanted you to stop by so we could
talk boxing. Have a word. And,
also, I wanted to give you
something.
                                                            
King dips his hand into a drawer behind his desk. It's
filled with copious copies of the same book: "Countering the
Conspiracy to Destroy Black Boys" by Jawanza Kunjufu. Tyson
examines the jacket.
                                                            
                       KING
Now, that there is one hell of a
riveting read. Got it just for
you. No Black man worth his salt
should be without it. The wisdom
contained within shall set you
free, my brotha.
                                                            
                       TYSON
Thanks, Don.
                                                            
                       KING
Absolutely, positively. Now, Mike,
I also wanted to express my
concern as of late over the
business side of your career.
                                                            
The flames in the fireplace snap.
                                                            
                       TYSON
Yeah?
                                                            
                       KING
I'm concerned regarding the way
it's being handled. Now, you made
eight point seven million for
knocking out Tony Tubbs?
                                                            
Tyson nods.
                                                            
                       KING
Well, what kind of deal is that?
Seriously, wasn't there a whole
lot of talk about ten million at
one point?
                                                            
Tyson shrugs his shoulders.
                                                            
                       KING
You don't know?! Well, there's
another problem.
                                                            

76.

                       TYSON
I think so. I think that's what
Bill said at first.
                                                            
                       KING
Oh, well, there you go. There's
yet another problem: Bill Cayton.
The man can't get you, Mike Tyson,
most dynamic, electrifying
heavyweight in the world -- maybe
of all-time -- more than eight and
change to fight Tony Tubbs in
Japan? That's a damn shame.
                                                            
                       TYSON
It's eight million.
                                                            
                       KING
Mike, listen to me: back in 1974,
I single-handedly put together the
"Rumble in the Jungle."
Ali-Foreman in Zaire. Now, Zaire
ain't rich. The Japs, on the other
hand, got money. I got Ali and
Foreman five million dollars a
piece from one of the poorest,
most impoverished nations in the
world, no less. That was back in
the seventies. We're coming up on
the nineties now, brotha. And your
-- for lack of a better word --
manager, Bill Cayton, can't even
get you an even ten mil in this
day in age? From the Japs, with
all their technological prowess,
making video games and flying cars
and shit? They got money to spend.
See what I mean?
                                                            
Tyson chuckles.
                                                            
                       KING
Honestly, Cayton, is a nice guy
and all, but he ain't much more
than another Jew in a three-piece
suit. You're only with him because
he was assigned to you by D'Amato.
Why he's in the boxing game, I'll
never know. As corrupt as the
sport is, he doesn't have the guts
to cut the right deals. It just
isn't him, and that's fine, but as
long as he's your man, these
shortcomings will be directly
            (MORE)

77.

                       KING (cont'd)
affecting your bank account. And
I'll be the bad guy, that's fine.
But the truth is the truth; it can
never be wrong. I'll be the bad
guy because I know, between me and
my maker, the truth spoken aloud
can never be a bad thing, no
matter how ugly it sounds. And
it's often ugly. But to ignore it
on those grounds, I believe, is
thoroughly unethical.
                                                            
Tyson shrugs and tilts his head boyishly.
                                                            
                       KING
Well, shit, ten million dollars
sounds a little better than eight
point seven, don't it?
                                                            
                       TYSON
It does.
                                                            
                       KING
It sounds about one point three
million dollars better, right?
                                                            
The cracking fireplace swells. The men howl together.
                                                            
                       KING
And, furthermore, I was wondering
about your corner? All white boys?
For the Black heavyweight
champion?
                                                            
                       TYSON
Aww, man. Yeah. Yeah, they've
always been with me.
                                                            
                       KING
Oh, I know the story. Everybody
does. Troubled Black teen,
straight out of Brooklyn, is taken
in by the old white sage, Cus
D'Amato. Saved by the white man,
saved from the streets, saved from
himself. All white trainers: Teddy
Atlas, Kevin Rooney --
                                                            
                       TYSON
N-No. No, he wasn't my trainer.
                                                            

78.

                       KING
Hmm?
                                                            
                       TYSON
Teddy Atlas was never my trainer.
                                                            
                       KING
Oh. Well, it ain't no mistake that
you were even discovered at that
little boy's prison by a white
former amateur boxer.
                                                            
                       TYSON
Bobby.
                                                            
                       KING
I'm just saying you might want to
think about getting some brothas
to back you up. Let us get a piece
of the pie. Sad but true, there
are some things in America that we
can only rely upon our own kind to
understand. Blacks need to stick
together like no other race does.
Racism ain't over. Never will be.
You're one of us, not one of them.
And they're the ones who are
really making money. You think
you're rich? Rich? Buying toys?
These white men are wealthy.
Wealthy off of your blood and
sweat. Sounds a little like the
old days, don't it? What's really
changed? Rich and wealthy: the two
words are not synonyms; they mean
something very different in this
country. Think about that.
                                                            
Tyson nods. King ashes his cigar. The fire grows violent.
                                                            
 
EXT. ATLANTIC CITY CONVENTION HALL - NIGHT
                                                            
A giant electronic board on the building scrolls an
advertisement: "WORLD HEAVYWEIGHT CHAMPIONSHIP - TYSON VS.
SPINKS - JUNE 27, 1988"
                                                            
 
INT. TRUMP PLAZA SHOWROOM - DAY
                                                            
A circus of media personnel surrounds the erected stage.
Spinks steps on the scale, flexing his long, lean muscles
for the crowd. An official tinkers with the weights.
                                                            

79.

                       OFFICIAL
      (into microphone)
Michael Spinks... Two-hundred
twelve, one-quarter pounds!
                                                            
TIME CUT - POST WEIGH-IN
                                                            
Spinks converses with a gang of reporters.
                                                            
                       SPINKS
Mike's not invincible. He's not
the half-man, half-beast you read
about in the papers. He's special,
but he's just a fighter.
                                                            
Elsewhere in the showroom, reporters converge around a
jocular Robin Givens.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
Well, yeah, contract be damned, I
guess. But, um, it just hasn't
worked out. Bill Cayton is not the
man for us. We wish him success in
the future, and maybe he's the
right guy for somebody else. But,
um, this is his last fight with
Michael. My Michael.
                                                            
 
INT. A GYM - NIGHT
                                                            
Reporters crowd around a post-workout Tyson.
                                                            
                       TYSON
All my life, this bull never
bothered me. I take it all with a
grain of salt. But my family, my
wife and mother-in-law, they're
being cut to pieces. It's new to
them. It hits a nerve. You call
them gold-diggers and say these
things, but, the truth is, if they
wanted my money, all they would
have to do is ask, and I would
hand it over to them gladly.
                                                            
 
INT. TRUMP PLAZA SHOWROOM - DAY
                                                            
Tyson flexes his organic armor. His squat frame bulges so
that he looks about ready to burst.
                                                            

80.

                       OFFICIAL
The undisputed heavyweight
champion of the world...
Two-hundred eighteen, and
one-quarter pounds!
                                                            
TIME CUT - POST WEIGH-IN
                                                            
Tyson snatches one reporter's microphone.
                                                            
                       TYSON
I'll break Spinks. I'll break them
all. When I fight someone, I want
to take his manhood. I want to rip
out his heart out and show it to
him. People say that's primitive,
that I'm an animal. But then they
pay five-hundred dollars to see
it. OK. It's human nature, and I'm
just a warrior. People watch
because what I do in the ring is
what they wish they were capable
of in their day-to-day lives. I'm
what you fear, but it's funny
because I'm also what you aspire
to be.
                                                            
 
INT. TYSON'S DRESSING ROOM - NIGHT
                                                            
Tyson is belly down on a bench as Jose makes chiropractic
adjustments to his muscle-braided back. Steve sits nearby.
                                                            
                       JOSE
I ducked and --
                                                            
                       TYSON
You caught him on the jaw!
                                                            
                       JOSE
No, no, he missed his overhand
right, and I hit him with a left
hook to the liver --
                                                            
                       TYSON
Oh, that's right!
                                                            
                       JOSE
That classic body punch, the one
the Mexicans love to use.
                                                            
                       STEVE
That was the punch of your career?
                                                            

81.

                       JOSE
I would have to say so. It was the
most perfectly placed. My opponent
dropped like a rock.
      (to Tyson)
All right, sit up.
                                                            
Tyson repositions himself; Jose massages his neck.
                                                            
                       STEVE
Mike, what was your best shot?
                                                            
                       TYSON
Shoot, I don't know. Ever?
Counting amateurs and all?
                                                            
                       STEVE
Everything. Of all time.
                                                            
                       JOSE
That's a lot to choose from.
                                                            
                       TYSON
Umm...
                                                            
                       STEVE
The best punch you ever landed.
                                                            
Tyson giggles to himself.
                                                            
                       TYSON
Oh, shit! OK, man, to be honest,
youse guys ain't gonna believe
this shit, but really, the
absolute best punch I've ever
thrown, man... it's got to be back
when me and Robin were dating...
                                                            
Tyson trembles with mirth. Jose slows his massage. Steve's
face freezes in a half-smile.
                                                            
                       TYSON
Shit, we were arguing and
fighting, and I just hit her with
this shot. My wife must have
bounced off every fucking wall in
the room, man. I swear.
                                                            
Tyson shakes his head, laughing.
                                                            
 

82.

INT. CONVENTION HALL - RINGSIDE - NIGHT
                                                            
A man in a suit appears in the aisle. He delivers an
envelope to Mr. Cayton and briskly skips away. Bill looks
around, baffled.
                                                            
                       BUFFER (O.C.)
      (over P.A. system)
... Television and film actress,
as well as wife of the heavyweight
champion, ladies and gentlemen...
Robin Givens.
                                                            
Bill tears open the envelope. A torrent of boos rains down
from the stands, reverberating throughout the arena.
                                                            
                       DORIS
Who was that? Bill?
                                                            
Bill examines the documents. They're heavy with printed text
and signatures: he is being sued by Tyson to break their
contract. Bill crumples the envelope and tosses it aside.
                                                            
ELSEWHERE RINGSIDE
                                                            
Robin stretches her face into a forced smile, hooking the
edges of her rictus onto those prominent cheekbones.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
Fuck 'em.
                                                            
 
INT. CONVENTION HALL - BACKSTAGE - NIGHT
                                                            
Butch and his droog are eased away from Tyson's dressing
room by Hazzard and the inspector.
                                                            
                       BUTCH
If something happens to my boy, if
they ruin this spectacle, it's on
you, Larry.
                                                            
Hazzard slams the dressing room door shut behind him.
                                                            
                       HAZZARD
Just go back to your fighter,
Butch. Let's get this thing
started already.
                                                            
Butch and his droog strut away, smiling.
                                                            

83.

                       BUTCH
We got in there! We're in Tyson's
head now, brotha! In his ass!
                                                            
 
INT. CONVENTION HALL - BOXING RING - NIGHT
                                                            
The crowd erupts as Tyson and his entourage emerge from
backstage. Flashes of light burst from the stands. Tyson
stands at the center of a rollicking sea of chaos, a
striking contrast: solid, silent, poised.
                                                            
                       T.V. COMMENTATOR (O.C.)
There he is! This is why we're
here!
                                                            
Tyson ascends the ring apron.
                                                            
                       BUFFER
      (into microphone)
And now, ladies and gentlemen,
once and for all, let's get ready
to rumble! Twelve rounds for the
undisputed heavyweight
championship of the world!
                                                            
Spinks lists in his corner from side to side.
                                                            
                       BUFFER (cont'd)
Introducing first, fighting out of
the blue corner, this Olympic Gold
Medal Champion has a professional
record of thirty-one victories
without a loss, twenty-one by
knockout. He is the former
undisputed and undefeated
light-heavyweight champion of the
world, and the only king of that
division ever to win the
heavyweight title in the history
of boxing. Because he never lost
that title in the ring, he is
still recognized by many,
including Boxing Illustrated and
Ring Magazine, as the heavyweight
champion. Ladies and gentlemen,
the undefeated man who brings the
Jinx... Michael Spinks!
                                                            
Spinks salutes the spectators. They applaud his introduction
with enthusiasm. Across the ring, the champion prowls. He
forces the padding back on his gloves, bringing his knuckles
as close to the red leather as possible.
                                                            

84.

                       BUFFER
And fighting out of the red
corner, wearing the solid black
trunks. His professional record:
thirty-four consecutive victories,
with thirty knockouts including
twenty-six kayos in five rounds or
less and fifteen in the first
round alone. Ladies and gentlemen,
presenting the undisputed,
undefeated heavyweight champion of
the world... "Iron" Mike Tyson!
                                                            
The crowd cheers with extra enthusiasm.
                                                            
                       T.V. COMMENTATOR (O.C.)
Millions and millions of dollars
on the line. Millions of people,
literally, around the world
watching this fight.
                                                            
The bell rings. Tyson pounces with a varied array of
punches. Spinks enforces his guard, curling his upper body
into a ball to shield himself from the onslaught. The
champion lands an overhand right that sends the challenger
reeling. Tyson envelopes Spinks and connects with a thudding
blow that takes his legs.
                                                            
                       T.V. COMMENTATOR (O.C.)
Body shot! Down goes Spinks for
the first time in his career!
                                                            
Spinks rises and takes the mandatory eight-count. The
fighters meet and exchange breath-stealing misfires, but
Tyson unchambers a speedy counter right that smashes Spinks'
skull. The challenger's entire skeleton locks at the joints,
and he topples backward like a felled tree.
                                                            
The murderous right hook throws the crowd into a mania.
Spinks' eyes are snapped open to the ceiling. He attempts to
rise, but ultimately tips face-first into the ring's bottom
rope after turning over on his knees.
                                                            
                       T.V. COMMENTATOR (O.C.)
He won't be able to do it! It's
all over! Mike Tyson has won! A
dramatic first round knockout!
                                                            
Doctors rush in to tend to the kayoed man. Tyson falls into
Kevin's giddy embrace; King swoops over and joins the hug.
Pandemonium reigns.
                                                            

85.

TITLE OVER BLACK: CHAPTER IV - QUICKER THAN THE ROSE
                                                            
 
INT. TYSON'S CASTLE - LIVING QUARTERS - DAY
                                                            
Tyson watches a Kung-fu movie on his big-screen television.
Without warning, a porcelain vase soars through the living
room and shatters against his head.
                                                            
                       ROBIN (O.C.)
You motherfucker! Son of a bitch!
                                                            
Tyson stumbles from his seat, clutching his head wound.
                                                            
                       TYSON
What the fuck?!
                                                            
Robin holds out a long pack of condoms.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
"What the fuck?!" What the fuck
are these? Huh?! You asshole, what
are these, Michael?
                                                            
                       TYSON
They're not mine. What are you
doing?
                                                            
Robin whips her husband with the strip of condoms.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
Shut the hell up!
                                                            
Ruth rushes into the room. Robin keeps whipping.
                                                            
                       RUTH
Robin, what's -- Baby, are you OK?
                                                            
Tyson scoops up a Louis XV chair and flings it. It destroys
a section of drywall as it lands. The women shriek.
                                                            
                       TYSON
Quit that shit, Robin! Are you
fucking crazy? What is your
problem?
                                                            
Ruth holds her daughter close.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
You don't use these things on me,
so why the fuck do you have them?
                                                            

86.

                       TYSON
I don't.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
You don't have these condoms in my
hand?! Who else in this house has
a dick?!
                                                            
                       TYSON
I don't -- I don't know!
                                                            
                       ROBIN
Oh, I know why, you thug bastard.
So you can have sex with some
whore when I'm not around --
                                                            
                       TYSON
No! Never!
                                                            
                       ROBIN
When I'm shooting my show, when
I'm out of town, so you can fuck
around!
                                                            
                       RUTH
Baby, calm down.
                                                            
                       TYSON
No, I can't, I fuckin' -- fuck!
                                                            
Tyson lifts the coffee table and launches it. It explodes
against the far wall.
                                                            
                       RUTH
Mike, stop!
                                                            
                       TYSON
Fuck you, don't you ever tell me
what to do in my own house.
                                                            
Tyson trusts out his leg and punts the sofa six yards.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
Don't you ever talk to my mother
like that!
                                                            
                       TYSON
Shut up, bitch.
                                                            
                       RUTH
I'm calling the police.
                                                            

87.

                       TYSON
Call 'em, bitch.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
Fuck you! You psycho! You're a
fucking pervert, Michael, I can't
believe you!
                                                            
                       RUTH
Come on, Robin.
                                                            
Ruth reaches out for her daughter, but Robin shrugs her off.
Ruth exits.
                                                            
                       TYSON
Don't fucking talk to me that way,
Robin. I love you, OK? So don't
fuck with me right now.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
Don't say that to me, Michael.
Nuh-uh. You don't love anyone.
You're a lost cause, and you don't
love me or my mother. You love
some fucking slut you bought
condoms for.
                                                            
Tyson's eyes well up from frustration.
                                                            
                       TYSON
No! I want my life with you. I
want us to have all these kids, a
family, and be together. Why would
I do that? I love you!
                                                            
                       ROBIN
Oh, no. Not yours. You can never
get me pregnant. Look at you,
you're an animal. I would never
let you.
                                                            
                       TYSON
Why are you mean to me? You're
fucking mean. We can try again.
Don't let the miscarriage scare
you, baby, please.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
Oh, Michael. You're so stupid.
There was no miscarriage, you
retard. I was never pregnant.
                                                            
Tyson's eyes spill over.
                                                            

88.

                       ROBIN
I'm Robin Givens. You could never
fuck me like that.
                                                            
Tyson snaps. He stampedes through the living room,
destroying his belongings, cursing incoherently. Robin cries
out. Her mother returns and holds her tight. They watch him
unravel like a pair of cloth handwraps.
                                                            
                       RUTH
The cops are on their way!
                                                            
Tyson smashes through a row of windows with a chunk of
wooden debris as a makeshift club.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
I'm calling Doctor McCurtis!
                                                            
 
INT. TYSON'S CASTLE - UPSTAIRS STUDY - DAY
                                                            
Robin flies in and dives for the phone on the desk.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
      (into phone)
Doctor McCurtis?!
                                                            
 
INT. MIKE & ROBINíS BEDROOM - DAY
                                                            
Ruth pulls a pair of suitcases from under the bed. She tears
Robin's clothing from the closet and throws it all in.
                                                            
 
INT. TYSON'S CASTLE - BATHROOM - DAY
                                                            
Tyson leans over the sink. He shuts his eyes and warps his
face, screaming into the mirror without making a sound.
                                                            
 
INT. TYSON'S CASTLE - UPSTAIRS STUDY - DAY
                                                            
Robin is curled beneath the desk with the phone to her ear.
                                                            
                       DR. MCCURTIS (O.S.)
Did he?
                                                            
                       ROBIN
Yes, he stopped. He stopped taking
them. He didn't like the way he
felt when he was on them.
                                                            

89.

                       DR. MCCURTIS (O.S.)
Well, there you go. That
medication is not something he can
just avoid taking, Robin.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
I told him.
                                                            
                       DR. MCCURTIS (O.S.)
We must schedule an emergency
evaluation for Mike, but my first
concern is you. You need to pack
your things and get out of there
right now. And I mean right now.
                                                            
 
EXT. TYSON'S CASTLE - DAY
                                                            
Ruth and Robin shuffle down the driveway toting their
suitcases.
                                                            
                       TYSON (O.C.)
Take that old bitch to her own
house! Keep her!
                                                            
Two Bernardsville police cruisers flash up on the residence.
OFFICER VALENTINE and SERGEANT HOWELL exit the vehicles.
                                                            
                       RUTH
Oh, thank God.
                                                            
Ruth and Robin jog up to the authorities.
                                                            
                       RUTH
Officer!
                                                            
                       HOWELL
What seems to be the disturbance,
ladies?
                                                            
                       RUTH
My son-in-law. My son-in-law. He's
in there. He went crazy and lost
his mind.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
He started breaking everything.
                                                            
                       RUTH
Yes, he was throwing all of our
belongings around, smashing --
                                                            

90.

                       HOWELL
Just a second.
      (to Robin)
You are the wife?
                                                            
                       ROBIN
Yes.
                                                            
                       VALENTINE
Has he struck either of you?
                                                            
                       RUTH
N...
                                                            
                       ROBIN
No. He -- He was just breaking
everything. Throwing everyth--
                                                            
                       RUTH
Throwing everything around in the
living room. He went crazy.
                                                            
                       VALENTINE
Is that him up there?
                                                            
Valentine directs the women's eyes to the front entrance of
the castle, where Tyson is now standing, calmly watching the
activity on his driveway.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
Yes. Yeah.
                                                            
                       HOWELL
I'm gonna go have a word with him
now. You two stay here with
Officer Valentine -- my name is
Sergeant Howell, by the way -- and
we're gonna work to get this all
cleared up, all right?
                                                            
                       ROBIN
Thank you.
                                                            
Howell approaches Tyson at the front door.
                                                            
                       HOWELL
Hello.
                                                            
                       TYSON
Hello.
                                                            
                       HOWELL
How are you?
                                                            

91.

                       TYSON
I'm fine. How are you?
                                                            
                       HOWELL
Just dandy. You know you got your
wife a little worried. You sure
you're OK?
                                                            
Tyson shrugs his shoulders.
                                                            
                       TYSON
Everything is fine. I don't know
why you guys are here, it's fine.
I just want to be left alone.
                                                            
                       HOWELL
I'm sure everything is going to be
fine, but do you think you can
spare a minute to let us peek in
your home? Make sure everything is
A-OK? I know it would mean a whole
lot to the little lady down there
bawling her eyes out if we could
just check and make sure.
                                                            
Tyson walks into his castle.
                                                            
                       TYSON
I guess...
                                                            
 
INT. TYSON'S CASTLE - LIVING QUARTERS - DAY
                                                            
Tyson leads Howell in. Everything is broken.
                                                            
                       HOWELL
OK...
                                                            
Ruth and Robin enter behind Officer Valentine.
                                                            
                       TYSON
What the fuck are they doing in
here? Get out!
                                                            
                       VALENTINE
Take it easy, sir. These ladies
have concern about the damage.
                                                            
                       TYSON
It's my damage. My things. My
damage is none of their concern.
                                                            

92.

                       HOWELL
Just give us a second, Mr. Tyson.
                                                            
                       TYSON
Don't "Mr. Tyson" me. You don't
know me. I want those bitches out.
                                                            
Tyson watches Ruth run toward the kitchen.
                                                            
                       TYSON
Fuck this. This is my house. I
can do whatever I want to it
because I worked and paid for it.
If I want to sit around and break
my own shit, that's nobody else's
business. Nobody can stop me.
Fuckin' cops can't stop me.
                                                            
Tyson javelin-throws a brass fireplace ornament through the
only unbroken window in the room.
                                                            
                       HOWELL
That's uncalled for!
                                                            
Tyson kicks debris from his path on the way out of his home.
Ruth pokes her head into the room.
                                                            
                       RUTH
I have his doctor on the phone.
                                                            
                       VALENTINE
Let me talk to him.
                                                            
 
EXT. TYSON'S CASTLE - DAY
                                                            
Tyson hops into his all-black Mercedes. Howell jogs down the
driveway after him.
                                                            
                       HOWELL
Mr. Tyson! Sir, we have your
doctor on the phone. Would you
like to talk to him?
                                                            
                       TYSON
I wouldn't like to talk to
anybody, I told you.
                                                            
                       HOWELL
OK. No problem.
                                                            

93.

                       TYSON
No, there is a problem, you
fucking cops, you scum. Fuck
y'all.
                                                            
Ruth and Robin appear in the driveway.
                                                            
                       TYSON
Just get the fuck off my property,
all of you, and fuck off. You make
me sick to my stomach. You're all
pigs.
                                                            
Tyson peels out. The screeching tires resound in his wake.
                                                            
 
INT. HADLEY & MCCLOY LAW FIRM - DAY
                                                            
A press conference. Bill, Lorraine, and their attorney sit
behind a conference table.
                                                            
                       BILL
      (into microphone)
We're very disappointed in Mike. I
thought he had far greater respect
for Jim's memory, but he brings
this lawsuit -- this outrage -- on
us now, when Jim's no longer here
to defend himself.
                                                            
 
INT. A GYM - DAY
                                                            
Kevin is accosted by a circle of reporters.
                                                            
                       KEVIN
I have to hear about this in the
newspaper? He can't even tell me
in person? That's not him. That's
not Mike. I have no doubt, no
doubt that it's Don King's work. I
have to read in the newspaper that
I'm fired as Mike's trainer. Of
course it was King's decision. You
know I wish he would call. And as
far as I'm concerned, I'm still
his trainer. Until he has the
balls to fire me to my face, like
a man, then I'm still his trainer.
                                                            
 

94.

INT. ALEXIS PARK HOTEL - CONFERENCE ROOM - DAY
                                                            
The click of the opening door brings Tyson and King to their
feet. Robin glides in with Ruth's lawyer, Howard. She makes
a beeline for Tyson, throwing her arms around him. He turns
his face, and her kiss lands on his cheek.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
Michael, my Michael, don't you
still love me? You do. That's why
you still call me. We still love
each other. Please, let's go into
the other room and talk --
                                                            
                       TYSON
You're a conniving bitch. I don't
trust you. It's over.
                                                            
Robin's soft eyes harden with a quickness.
                                                            
INSERT: DIVORCE PAPERS
                                                            
Robin's hand scrawls an autograph across the page.
                                                            
                       ROBIN
This isn't the last you've seen of
Robin Givens.
                                                            
She storms out. King places a comforting hand on Tyson's
back, near the neck. An attorney produces another packet of
papers. King smiles.
                                                            
INSERT: TYSON/DKP PROMOTION AGREEMENT
                                                            
One sentence reads: "Tyson wishes to grant to DON KING
PRODUCTIONS, INC. the sole and exclusive right to secure,
arrange and promote all professional boxing bouts requiring
Tyson's services..."
                                                            
Tyson signs the contract.
                                                            
 
INT. HOTEL BALLROOM - DAY
                                                            
A rostrum juts out into an ocean of reporters. King
approaches the podium.
                                                            
                       KING
      (into microphone)
Ladies and gentlemen, come one,
come all! Hear me now: the most
electrifying spectacle in sports
today is not the World Series or
Super Bowl champion. You won't
            (MORE)

95.

                       KING (cont'd)
find this kind of entertainment on
any court, track, or field. For
the most dominant force in sports
today is just one man. One
beautiful Black gladiator in the
modern age. He is an honorable
warrior in a time where honor is
fleeting, and true warriors are
scarce. Not only a pioneer in
pugilism, he is a role model for
our youth, an American hero for us
all. Yes, sir! He represents
America, the American dream, all
fifty states! He is our ambassador
of goodwill to all peoples of the
world. Indeed, he is one of our
national treasures. Boxing needed
a hero, and God sent Mike Tyson!
                                                            
Modest applause from the crowd. Tyson approaches the podium.
                                                            
                       TYSON
      (into microphone)
Thank you, Don. I'm here today to
clear up any confusion regarding
my career. My life has gone
through a lot of changes recently.
You all read the papers. But right
now I'm setting it in order. I
would like to announce that Don is
from here on out my promoter. He
is the greatest promoter in boxing
history, no one can argue that,
and I am honored to have him. I'm
very happy at this particular
moment in my life, and Don King
has had a big hand in that.
                                                            
King applauds himself.
                                                            
                       TYSON (cont'd)
I'm finally enjoying the single
life, trying to move on. You know,
I'm a human being, I'm bound to
slip on a banana peel. I just
don't like people feeling sorry
for me. I despise sympathy. I hear
people say, "Poor Mike Tyson," but
there's nothing poor about me.
Regarding my career, I want to say
that, make no mistake, Aaron
Snowell is my permanent trainer.
He is a loyal friend, something
            (MORE)

96.

                       TYSON (cont'd)
that's getting harder to come by
these days. Lastly, yes, I will
return to the ring soon. A deal
has been struck for me to meet
James, uh... James Douglas in
Tokyo early next year. I look
forward to a great fight, and, as
always, I plan to emerge
victorious.
                                                            
 
INT. KING'S MANSION - LIVING ROOM - NIGHT
                                                            
A house party is in progress. Decorations indicate that it
is New Year's Eve, and the coming year is to be known as
1990. A jam of party people congregate around a T.V. screen.
                                                            
Tyson and Rory are at the center of the crowd with their
arms around two drunk women. Another young Black man is with
them: JOHN HORNE, 25. Hovering behind them all, King is
comically inebriated.
                                                            
                       EVERYBODY
Three! Two! One! Happy New Year!
                                                            
Confetti and an uproar shoot into the air. Tyson turns to
one of the women and kisses her passionately on the lips.
Then he turns to the other woman and kisses her, too.
                                                            
 
INT. AIRPORT - DAY
                                                            
THE NEW TEAM TYSON: Tyson, King, Rory, John, Jay Bright, and
trainer AARON SNOWELL, 20s, stand at the check-in counter
with their luggage. They're all Black except for Jay. King
addresses an airport employee:
                                                            
                       KING
Plane tickets to Tokyo for Mike
Tyson: heavyweight champion of the
world and greatest boxer in
history!
                                                            
 
EXT. TOKYO SKYLINE - DAY
                                                            
The techno metropolis is a dazzling sight. Tyson's plane
swoops down and floats off toward the horizon.
                                                            
 

97.

INT. A GYM - DAY
                                                            
Tyson and sparring partner GREG PAGE trade blows in the
ring. Aaron watches from the apron. The rest of the new Team
Tyson observe the action from afar.
                                                            
                       AARON
Come on, baby, push him back. Come
on, let's work. Movement! Make up
for lost time.
                                                            
The fight intensifies. Tyson charges in, and Page catches
him with a right. He lands on his butt, eliciting a sharp
gasp from his entourage. Tyson springs up from the canvas.
                                                            
                       AARON
What, baby, you OK? You slip?
                                                            
Tyson doesn't respond. Jay hops in the ring and removes his
gear.
                                                            
                       JAY
Good work, Mikey.
                                                            
                       KING
That's enough for today.
                                                            
King approaches Page with a smile. Outside the ring, John
and Rory turn to each other in disbelief. Their faces seem
to exclaim: "OH, SHIT!"
                                                            
 
EXT. TOKYO DOME (ESTABLISHING) - NIGHT
                                                            
Tyson fanatics file into the building. The egg-shaped arena
has been adorned with pride for the world event.
                                                            
 
INT. TYSON'S DRESSING ROOM - NIGHT
                                                            
Tyson paces alone, as far from his entourage as possible.
His muscles are dry.
                                                            
 
INT. DOUGLAS' DRESSING ROOM - NIGHT
                                                            
JAMES "BUSTER" DOUGLAS, 29, a tower of a man, strikes his
trainer's waiting mitts with sharp, heavy blows. His
optimistic entourage applauds the display.
                                                            
 

98.

INT. TYSON'S DRESSING ROOM - NIGHT
                                                            
Tyson bounces on his toes, presses his fists together. Team
Tyson jokes in the background.
                                                            
 
INT. DOUGLAS' DRESSING ROOM - NIGHT
                                                            
Buster's fists blister his trainer's mitts.
                                                            
 
INT. TOKYO DOME - BOXING RING - NIGHT
                                                            
Buster's fists blister Tyson's face. The Japanese crowd
responds to the sight with silence.
                                                            
                       T.V. COMMENTATOR (O.C.)
Look at Buster landing some
punches! This may be Buster
Douglas' round!
                                                            
Referee OCTAVIO MEYRAN watches the action closely. Buster
fires quick, crisp jabs from the outside, keeping Tyson at
bay. The bell rings.
                                                            
                       T.V. COMMENTATOR (O.C.)
That's the end of round two, and I
gave that one to Douglas. What a
surprise. 42-1 odds coming in, but
the challenger is game.
                                                            
Aaron climbs through the ropes. Jay discharges cold water
over Tyson before he's on his stool.
                                                            
                       AARON
Don't just stand there
flat-footed, baby, work. Don't be
too cautious with your punches,
OK? Use that seven to back him up.
                                                            
TIME CUT
                                                            
The action resumes. Buster fights his fight, picking off
Tyson from a distance.
                                                            
                       T.V. COMMENTATOR (O.C.)
You know, you get the idea that
maybe Tyson and his corner are
letting Douglas have his way here.
With Mike Tyson, all it takes is
one punch. We've --
                                                            
Tyson's head snaps back from a thunderous right hand.
                                                            

99.

                       T.V. COMMENTATOR (O.C.)
Ooh, there's a huge right from
Buster!
                                                            
TIME CUT - TYSON'S CORNER
                                                            
Tyson's left eye swells into a grotesque brown ball.
                                                            
                       AARON
Let's go, Mike, let those hands
go. Back this guy up. Six, four,
one inside, baby. Move your head
on the inside, and throw that
combo inside, the six, four --
                                                            
 
INT. CAMILLE'S KITCHEN - 1983 - NIGHT
                                                            
A teenage Tyson sits at the dinner table with Cus.
                                                            
                       CUS
-- one. Six, four, one inside.
                                                            
From his seat, Cus fires the combination into space.
                                                            
 
INT. TOKYO DOME - BOXING RING - DAY
                                                            
Tyson does his best to enforce his guard, but the
challenger's blows are so heavy they break through.
                                                            
                       T.V. COMMENTATOR (O.C.)
Buster Douglas is having the fight
of his life! He is not afraid!
                                                            
TIME CUT - TYSON'S CORNER
                                                            
Tyson's eye has completely sealed shut. Jay hurries to tie
off a latex glove filled with ice water. He holds it against
the throbbing mound of flesh.
                                                            
                       AARON
All right, baby, we've got to do
this. Get in there. Start.
                                                            
 
INT. CAMILLE'S KITCHEN - 1983 - NIGHT
                                                            
                       CUS
Your battle begins before the date
of the actual physical showdown.
I've seen good fighters who were
lazy never become great, so you
leave your blood and sweat in that
            (MORE)

100.

                       CUS (cont'd)
gym. Eliminate distractions. If
you want the victory then there is
nothing else. The training is
Hell, and then the fight is easy.
                                                            
 
INT. TOKYO DOME - BOXING RING - NIGHT
                                                            
                       CUS (O.S.)
Because the truth will find you in
that ring.
                                                            
Tyson rises from his stool. The bell rings.
                                                            
                       T.V. COMMENTATOR (O.C.)
Round eight of Tyson-Douglas. This