Liam Neeson Addresses Backlash Over Jarring Story

'I'm not a racist,' actor says on 'Good Morning America'
By Newser Editors,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 5, 2019 9:40 AM CST
Liam Neeson: 'I'm Not a Racist'
Liam Neeson in a 2016 photo.   (Photo by Vianney Le Caer/Invision/AP, file)

Liam Neeson appeared on ABC's Good Morning America Tuesday to address the backlash over a disturbing story he told about his younger days. "I'm not a racist," Neeson told host Robin Roberts. The 66-year-old actor confirmed that nearly four decades ago, a friend of his was raped by a black man, prompting him to walk the streets looking for a black man to attack in retaliation. "I went out deliberately into black areas in the city, looking to be set upon," he said. "It shocked me and it hurt me. I did seek help, I went to a priest." Neeson, however, said it wasn't about race—if his friend's attacker was white, he would have sought a white man to attack.

"If she'd have said [the rapist was] Irish, or a Scot, or a Brit, or a Lithuanian, [it] would have had the same effect," he said, per Fox News. "I was trying to show honor [and] stand up for my dear friend in this terrible medieval fashion. ... Luckily no violence occurred, ever." Neeson, who called the experience a "learning curve," told the original story while plugging his new movie, Cold Pursuit, which involves revenge. He was making the point that he could relate. "God forbid you’ve ever had a member of your family hurt under criminal conditions," he told Roberts. (Read more Liam Neeson stories.)

We use cookies. By Clicking "OK" or any content on this site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. Read more in our privacy policy.
Get the news faster.
Tap to install our app.
Install the Newser News app
in two easy steps:
1. Tap in your navigation bar.
2. Tap to Add to Home Screen.