The red carpet premiere of Liam Neeson’s new movie was cancelled this week, following his shocking revenge attack admission.
The 66-year-old actor left fans both angered and confused when he candidly admitted he had deliberately sought a racially-charged altercation because he was so desperate to “kill” a “black bas***d” after a female friend was brutally raped by a black man.
The star made the controversial comments while trying to explain why he understood his character’s desire for revenge in his latest film, Cold Pursuit.
Though Liam attempted to clarify his comments and insisted he is “not racist” in an interview on Good Morning America, hours before he and his co-stars in the movie were due to walk the red carpet on Tuesday, all interviews and photo calls were cancelled.
However, the screening of the movie was still scheduled to go ahead as planned.
Despite Liam immediately admitting he was ashamed of how he’d felt at the time in his interview with The Independent, the Taken star has faced severe backlash for his comments.
He had been describing his reaction when the female acquaintance confided in him about being raped and said: “I asked, did she know who it was? No. What colour were they? She said it was a black person.
“I went up and down areas with a cosh, hoping I’d be approached by somebody – I’m ashamed to say that – and I did it for maybe a week, hoping some ‘black b*****d’ would come out of a pub and have a go at me about something, you know? So that I could kill him.
“It took me a week, maybe a week and a half, to go through that. She would say, ‘Where are you going?’ And I would say, ‘I’m just going out for a walk.’ You know? ‘What’s wrong?’ ‘No no, nothing’s wrong.’ ”
He then gave a follow-up interview on where he admitted he had been “shocked” by his “primal urge” for revenge.
He said: “I had never felt this feeling before, which was a primal urge to lash out.
“She said he was a black man. After that, there were some nights I went out deliberately into black areas in the city looking to be set upon so that I could unleash physical violence…”
Liam admitted he sought help for his violent feelings and added: “I did seek help. I went to a priest, [he] heard my confession and I was a Catholic. I am not racist. This was nearly 40 years ago.”
With additional reporting by Bang Showbiz
Got a story tip? Send it to firstname.lastname@example.org
Or sign up to our daily newsletter here.