In his boxing heyday, Mike Tyson was know as an animal in the ring. In the hit comedy “The Hangover,” Mike Tyson played the owner of a particular wild animal. So maybe we shouldn’t be surprised that Mike Tyson’s new unscripted television series will be on Animal Planet.
Animal Planet announced on Monday (March 15) that the former heavyweight champ and his love of pigeons will be the focus of the new series “Taking on Tyson,” which will shoot this spring in New York City and premiere in early 2011.
Tyson has been raising pigeons his whole life and in “Taking on Tyson,” he’ll enter the world of pigeon racing for the first time.
“Tyson”s passion for his pigeons takes my breath away,” states Marjorie Kaplan, president and general manager of Animal Planet Media. “For years, he has been inspired by these birds that he feels have the ‘biggest heart” in the animal kingdom. ‘Taking on Tyson’ peels back new layers of the remarkable persona and deep humanity of Mike Tyson while also showing us a whole world we never knew existed right on the rooftops of New York City.”
Adds Tyson in the cable network’s statement, “I’m honored to be a part of this monumental show on Animal Planet. I feel a great pride acting as an official representative for all the pigeon fancier”s out there. I want people to see why we love these birds. It feels good returning to the rooftops of the city where it all started for me – New York.”
[The previous quote is even better if you imagine it being said in Mike Tyson’s voice.]
Animal Planet says that “Taking on Tyson” will pair Tyson up with a team of pigeon experts including trainer Vinnie Torre, caretakers the Roman brothers and promoter/manager Mario Costa. Along the way, viewers will be introduced to the world of weekly pigeon auctions and dynamic competitions.
Tyson will executive produce along with Malcolm Brinkworth and Jason Carey.