Liam Neeson is ‘profoundly apologizing’ two months after some comments he made that sparked controversy regarding racism.
In February, Liam Neeson attracted intense criticism after being asked about revenge in regards to a female friend that was sexually abused. He responded by saying that he wanted to find a “black bastard” to “kill”.
At the time, he told The Independent, “[His friend] handled the situation of the rape in the most extraordinary way. But my immediate reaction was… I asked, did she know who it was? No. What color were they? She said it was a black person.”
He added, “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 bastard’ [two words which the newspaper refers to him as using air quotes as he said] would come out of a pub and have a go at me about something, you know? So that I could… kill him”. He appeared on television days later to explain his comments but the outrage did not die down.
Two months later, the Taken actor has once again addressed the controversy. He said, “Over the last several weeks, I have reflected on and spoken to a variety of people who were hurt by my impulsive recounting of a brutal rape of a dear female friend nearly 40-years-ago and my unacceptable thoughts and actions at that time in response to this crime.”
He added, “The horror of what happened to my friend ignited irrational thoughts that do not represent the person I am. In trying to explain those feelings today, I missed the point and hurt many people at a time when language is so often weaponized. An entire community of innocent people are targeted in acts of rage.”
He continued, “What I failed to realise is that this is not about justifying my anger all those years ago. It is also about the impact my words have today. I was wrong to do what I did. I recognize that, although the comments I made do not reflect, in any way, my true feelings nor me, they were hurtful and divisive. I profoundly apologize.”
Footballer John Barnes, actress Whoopi Goldberg and Widows star Michelle Rodriguez all voiced their support for Liam Neeson.