Is Liam Neeson stepping down as an action star? Sounds like he might in the future. Unlike other people in his age bracket — Bruce Willis, Sylvester Stallone, and Arnold Schwarzenegger — it sounds like Neeson knows when it’s time to place the crown on someone else’s head.
In an interview with the Guardian, the action star, who has made some serious bank with the Taken series, said he will be done with the genre in a few years. But how many years exactly? Well, Neeson told the outlet it isn’t too far off.
“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. It’s very flattering. But there is a limit, of course.”
He continued, “If I feel audiences saying, ‘Come on, he’s 62, enough is enough,’ I’m very sensitive to that and if I pick up that vibe it will all stop. And I’ll start playing dads or grandfathers. But I keep myself pretty fit and my knees are still great. And it’s fun.”
“Maybe two more years. If God spares me and I’m healthy, but after that, I’ll stop [the action] I think.”
Currently Neeson is promoting his new action film Run All Night, which stars Ed Harris and Joel Kinnaman. Kinnaman plays his son, who is in danger of dying at the hands of his childhood pal, Shawn Maguire (Harris), who also happens to be in the underworld of crime. Neeson plays Jimmy, a man who got out of the game until Harris’ character dangles his son’s life in front of him.
It’s probably a safe bet for Neeson to stay out of the genre. His last stab at the Taken series didn’t get the best reviews, despite the actor working his charisma.
The Telegraph called the film a “tragedy.”
“This is all a far cry from the original Taken film, the sheepish fun of which lay in seeing Neeson’s primal, fatherly rage being shaken out of retirement. Back then he was still Aslan, Kinsey, Rob Roy, Oskar Schindler, and the violence – visceral and transgressive, rather than the bloodless, 12A-rated shoot-’em-up stuff here – felt like the eruption of a long-dormant volcano. Now it’s just Liam Neeson hitting people again. What a tragedy that’s become boring.”
If writers can’t come up with worthy material for an actor like Neeson, then why should he waste his caliber of talent in a genre that’s usually a young man’s game to begin with?
[Image via EuropeCorp]