We have a Mike Tyson movie coming soon, with Jamie Foxx portraying “Iron Mike,” and there is also a Lennox Lewis documentary on the way. There is no doubt, the life of a fighter, in and out of the ring, proves fascinating, to avid boxing fans as well as non boxing fans. Lewis spoke to Deadline about the forthcoming documentary – which will be narrated by rap legend Dr. Dre – and he said he has always been inspired by the great boxing documentaries.
There have of course been some great ones over the years – “Thrilla in Manila,” “Unforgivable Blackness,” “The Fight of Their Lives,” and “When We Were Kings” among the most celebrated and acclaimed – and Lewis says his story is one that needed telling. Lewis says that, unlike Tyson, “there isn’t much information out there about me,” and that the new documentary will be “a look behind the curtain at things that took place in my past.”
Rick Lazes and Seth Koch, the two directors of the film, inform us how some of Lewis’ former opponents, such as Tyson and Evander Holyfield, will appear in the documentary. However, the film will also go into detail about Lewis’ tough upbringing in London. Also, with the recent, shocking death of George Floyd still fresh in many millions of minds, and the Black Lives Matter movement dominating the headlines, the Lewis film is “very current.”
“One of the things that makes this film important is that it’s very current in the period of George Floyd and the Black Lives Matter movement,” Lazes says. “Lennox grew up during the Brixton riots and was alone in London for several years when his mom moved to Canada to get a job. The movie is about overcoming obstacles, passion, forgiveness and Lennox’s compassion, but it also questions who we hero-ise. It’s interesting how someone like Mike Tyson gets so much attention while someone like Lennox, who was disciplined, dedicated, honest and worked so hard, hasn’t quite had the same spotlight.”
Indeed, Lewis’ private life is just that, private. Tyson’s life is very much an open book, whereas we do not know too much about Lewis outside of the ring. As such, “Tough Love” promises to be fascinating viewing. Interestingly, it was on this day 17 years ago when Lewis’ career came to an end with that bloody, tough and exhausting battle with Vitali Klitschko.
To this day, plenty of fans criticize Lewis for failing to give Vitali a rematch. Don’t expect this subject to come up in the new documentary.