Entertainment

Liam Neeson admits to past racist revenge plot: ‘It’s awful’


Liam Neeson‘s new movie “Cold Pursuit” is all about the motives behind revenge, but when discussing the themes in the upcoming film, one reporter got a story from the actor’s past that is simply shocking.

In an interview with the Independent, Neeson opened up about a past incident many years ago, where he learned that someone close to him had been raped. He now admits his reaction was just “awful.”

“God forbid you’ve ever had a member of your family hurt under criminal conditions,” he explained, adding that after he found out about the rape, “My immediate reaction was … I asked, did she know who it was? No. What color were they? She said it was a black person.”

The “Taken” star, 66, then goes on to admit he went up and down the streets with a heavy stick, hoping someone would approach him and start an altercation.

“I’m ashamed to say that and I did it for maybe a week, hoping some ‘black b******’ would come out of a pub and have a go at me about something, you know? So that I could … kill him,” he continued.

A request for further comment or clarification from Neeson’s rep was not immediately returned to ABC News.

PHOTO: Liam Neeson attends an event in New York City, Jan. 7, 2015.Mike Pont/FilmMagic/Getty Images, FILE
Liam Neeson attends an event in New York City, Jan. 7, 2015.

The Independent also released audio of the interview along with the print piece.

Neeson was being interviewed with his co-star in “Cold Pursuit,” Tom Bateman, who was so jarred by the story that you can hear him say “Holy s—” right after Neeson reveals the story.

“It was horrible, horrible when I think back, that I did that … It’s awful, but I did learn a lesson from it, when I eventually thought, ‘What the f— are you doing?’ you know?” Neeson added.

The actor added some details about his upbringing as part of an explanation.

“I grew up in Northern Ireland in the Troubles and, you know, I knew a couple of guys that died on hunger strike, and I had acquaintances who were very caught up in the Troubles, and I understand that need for revenge, but it just leads to more revenge, to more killing and more killing, and you know Northern Ireland’s proof of that. All this stuff that’s happening in the world, the violence, is proof of that, you know,” he said.

In the interview, Neeson didn’t address or clarify the racial aspect of his asking, “What color were they?”

The reporter says in the piece that she followed up with Neeson’s rep to get clarification or a follow-up interview and was declined.



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