- 01 Apr 19
Liam Neeson says "I profoundly apologise" for racially charged statements made during an interview with The Independent in February.
During an interview with The Independent published in early February, Liam Neeson revealed he had once walked the streets with a weapon, hoping to be approached by a “black bastard”, who he intended to kill in a misguided attempt at vengeance after a close friend of his was raped.
Public contempt quickly surfaced in response to his statement, and in turn, Neeson appeared on the US talk show Good Morning America to address the backlash.
Though he recognised that both his thoughts and behaviours were unacceptable, Neeson also defended himself on the show, saying, "I'm not racist, this was nearly 40 years ago.”
One of the show's hosts, Robin Roberts, urged Neeson to "understand the pain of a black person" in light of the widespread distribution of The Independent interview.
Now, nearly two months after his Good Morning America appearance, Neeson has issued a lengthy apology concerning the decades-old revelation.
The apology reads: "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. 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 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. 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."