- 18 Oct 21
The Tuam babies scandal, which shocked the world in 2014, will be the topic of Liam Neeson's upcoming project.
Ballymena native Liam Neeson has revealed that he has been collaborating with historian Catherine Corless on a new film dealing with the Tuam babies scandal.
When the story first broke in 2014, it shocked the country. An unmarked grave containing almost 800 children was found at a former Catholic-run home in Tuam, Co Galway. The dates of the children’s deaths ranged from 1925 to 1961.
The organisation responsible for the deaths was one of the now-infamous mother and baby homes run by the Bon Secours order of nuns. Catherine Corless, who is co-producing the film with Leeson, was the researcher and campaigner who spearheaded the efforts for the investigation which uncovered the mass grave.
A local historian in Tuam, Catherine had discovered local stories about the undocumented graves when she decided to look into it.
“For the first time in my life, and I've made some 93/94 films, I never felt this way before,” Neeson said speaking on the Late Late Show. “I was lying on my bed, I shot up straight and I thought I'm going to do something about this. Whatever celebrity status I have in the film world, I'm going to do something.”
"I visited Catherine and her lovely husband, Aidan, three years ago. I spent a few hours, and I was just struck by the humility by this ordinary and extraordinary woman and her husband,” he continued. “She filled me in on this extraordinary story. So, we're going to do this film, we have a wonderful writer on board, and I told Catherine to be patient with us as the film process can take a long time, for example, Schindler's List took 10 years to get together until we got a script.
The 69-year-old actor does not expect the project to take a decade, stating that it has been in production for three years already, and it’s close to completion.
The film comes after earlier this year the Mother and Baby Homes Commission of Investigation found that around 9,000 children - one in seven of those born in the institutions - had died between 1922 and 1998. The numbers point to an infant mortality death rate twice that of the general population. Reacting to the findings, President Michael D. Higgins stated: "State and Church bear a heavy responsibility."
You can watch Liam Neeson's interview on the Late Late Show below: