Irish actor Liam Neeson, 62, has been acting in Hollywood since the late 70s. He has appeared in major roles across several genres including his portrayal of Qui-Gon Jinn in Star Wars-Episode I: The Phantom Menace as well as the widowed stepdad in the huge romantic comedy Love Actually.
For whatever reason, however, it was not until he starred in Taken in 2008 at the age of 56 and proclaimed he had “a particular set of skills” did everyone really take notice of his action movie abilities.
The film was such a huge success it inspired an entire franchise, pulled in $900 million worldwide, and made Neeson a certified Hollywood bada– in leagues with other major action stars, but sadly the action-oriented side of the actor is coming to an end.
Neeson was asked by The Guardian how much longer he would be churning out the fast-paced, gun-toting, butt-kicking films and he didn’t give himself a very long timeline, unfortunately. “Maybe two more years,” he says, “If God spares me and I’m healthy. But after that, I’ll stop [the action] I think.”
He went on to address the fact that after Taken, his reputation in Hollywood (in terms of getting scripts) definitely changed, “I’m in a very, career-wise, great place. The success of…certainly the Taken films, Hollywood seems to see me in a different light. I get sent quite a few action-oriented scripts, which is great. I’m not knocking. It’s very flattering. But there is a limit, of course.”
While Neeson has previously voiced his concerns about audiences getting sick of an older guy pulling off the action-hero role, his Run All Night co-star Joel Kinnaman, who plays Neeson’s son in the film feels otherwise. “He’s so physically capable, he’s an old boxer. When he knocks somebody out in the movie, you believe it… Ed [Harris], Liam, and Nick [Nolte]. They are people I’ve looked up to and revered their work. I think it’s kind of cool with all these old farts, kicking a–, killing people.”
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