He’s on an apology tour. In order to tap into his character in the movie Cold Pursuit, Liam Neeson revealed that he wanted to kill a “black” man in real life after a good friend was sexually assaulted. Now, during a Good Morning America appearance, the actor, 66, wants to clear up his controversial comments.
“It really shocked me this primal urge I had,” he confessed. “It shocked me and it hurt me. I did seek help. I went to a priest, heard my confession and I was a Catholic. Two very good friends that I talked to and believe it or not, power walking. Two hours every day to get rid of this and I’m not racist. This was nearly 40 years ago.”
The Ireland native didn’t realize that his mind was even capable of going to these dark places. “I was trying to show honor to my — stand up for my dear friend and terrible medieval fashion,” he said on the ABC talk show. “I’m a fairly intelligent guy and that’s why it kind of shocked me when I came down to earth after having these horrible feelings. Luckily, no violence occurred ever.”
In an interview with UK’s The Independent that was released on February 4, Liam revealed that he wanted to get justice for his friend at the time. “She said it was a black person,” he said. “I went up and down areas with a cosh, hoping I’d be approached by somebody — I’m as ashamed to say that — and I did it for maybe a week, hoping some [gesturing air quotes with his fingers] ‘black b—ard’ would come out of a pub and have a go at me about something, you know? So that I could kill him.”
However, the Taken star regrets his comments but hopes that there is teachable moment underneath it all — to talk about these kinds of issues. He added, “We all pretend we’re all kind of politically correct. I mean, in this country, it’s the same in my own country too. You sometimes just scratch the surface and you discover this racism and bigotry and it’s there.”
Well, we hope that Liam learned his lesson.