Liam Neeson issued a fairly detailed apology Friday for how he reacted to a friend's rape decades ago—by roaming the streets with a stick hoping to fight what he called "some black bastard," the Guardian reports. In his statement, Neeson said he regrets his "unacceptable thoughts and actions" and insists they "do not represent the person I am." He went on, per Deadline: "In trying to explain those feelings today, I missed the point and hurt many people at a time when language is so often weaponized and an entire community of innocent people are targeted in acts of rage. What I failed to realize 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," he added. "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." Back in February, Neeson said that after a friend was raped 40 years ago, he walked around near pubs hoping a black man would "go at me or something" so that "I could ... kill him." He then appeared on Good Morning America and denied being racist—"I'm not racist," he said—and saw his career jeopardized when the New York premiere of his latest movie Cold Pursuit was was canceled. (Read more Liam Neeson stories.)