Madonna wanted Mike Tyson on her new album because he's a ''remarkable human being''.

The pop superstar was determined to have the former world heavyweight champion boxer on the track 'Iconic' - taken from her 13th studio LP 'Rebel Heart' - despite facing criticism because of his troubled past, which includes a conviction for rape.

Madonna, 56, has revealed wanted to work with 'Iron' Mike because epitomises what it means to turn your life around.

In an exclusive interview with The Sun newspaper, she said: ''He's gone through a lot. I think his evolution is quite interesting. I knew him when he was married to Robin Givens.

''I've seen all the trials and tribulations he's been through. He's a changed man. He's been through a lot. He's suffered a lot.

''He's made other people suffer. But I think he's a truly remarkable human being. I think he's a role model. He's the perfect example of how you can come from a very bleak upbringing, with no education, make mistakes and turn your life around.''

The thing that convinced Madonna to work with Mike was the one man show, 'Mike Tyson: Undisputed Truth', he developed with Spike Lee in which he bared his soul.

She explained: ''I saw his one-man show that Spike Lee directed for HBO. I was really impressed with his honesty, his wit and charm. He seemed to be very remorseful. I thought, 'That's a man.' ''

Mike, 48, recently recalled a double date he went on with his ex-wife Robin and Madonna her first husband Sean Penn in the 1980s that resulted in the two men falling asleep.

The revered ex-pugilist said: ''We saw Pee Wee Herman's 'Big Top' ... We were with both of our significant others at the time, of course. It was in the 80s. She was married to Sean, I was married as well. Me and Sean fell asleep in the movie.''