Mike Tyson Took His Role In The Hangover For Drug Money

Had it not been for Bill Murray's screamingly hilarious turn as himself in Zombieland, the best cameo of the year would have most certainly gone to Mike Tyson for his performance in The Hangover. Certainly a Las Vegas legend, it was great to see the man rocking out to Phil Collins before smashing Zach Galifianakis in the face. It was also refreshing to see a man who typically takes himself so seriously relax into a comedy. Sadly, it turns out that he was doing it for all the wrong reasons.

During an interview with ESPN Radio Las Vegas (via Sports Radio Interviews), Tyson said that the only reason he took the role was as a way to support his drug habit. Quoth the former heavyweight champion:

“I was doing that to supply my drug habit. I’m sorry I’m coming at you guys like this… I said, ‘Wow, This is going to be really good. We’re going to sell this stuff on 42nd street on bootleg and make a lot of money.’ This is my best thinking on drugs… It wasn’t that way. It was an international success."

Tyson isn't the first person to take film roles to support a drug habit (I'm looking at you, Lindsey Lohan), but there's something incredibly depressing about this story. Tyson has never really been a decent person - he bit a man's ear off and spent time in prison on rape charges - but it says something about the power of drugs when they can completely weaken a man as powerful as Tyson. The man is currently on the road to recovery and we can hope that his terrible past is behind him.

Eric Eisenberg
Assistant Managing Editor

Eric Eisenberg is the Assistant Managing Editor at CinemaBlend. After graduating Boston University and earning a bachelor’s degree in journalism, he took a part-time job as a staff writer for CinemaBlend, and after six months was offered the opportunity to move to Los Angeles and take on a newly created West Coast Editor position. Over a decade later, he's continuing to advance his interests and expertise. In addition to conducting filmmaker interviews and contributing to the news and feature content of the site, Eric also oversees the Movie Reviews section, writes the the weekend box office report (published Sundays), and is the site's resident Stephen King expert. He has two King-related columns.