Liam Neeson is the new Chuck Norris. These past several years, the Oscar-winning actor has been reinventing himself into a bona fide action star, literally opening the door for other male stars past their 50s to do the same.
As he puts it in a new interview with The Hollywood Reporter
, “60 is the new 40.” Where Liam is concerned, that totally holds water.
The star, who is 60 years old, is now doing roles that he would have probably avoided in his youth because of their physicality, but that doesn’t mean he’s compromising real acting for them, for the ability to do them.
Having started working on his new action star image with “Taken,” which is getting a sequel
this year, Liam says the genre holds a particular appeal for him because of the little boy he still has inside.
“[Action] appeals to the little boy inside of me. There’s a wonderful release that comes with that physicality,” Neeson explains.
“The lovely thing about doing Taken 2 is there’s quite a lot of action, but then there were wonderful days that were just acting with [co-stars] Maggie Grace or Famke Janssen. They were almost luxurious because you had no physical stuff to do and could just act,” the actor adds.
He goes on to say that his big break into action movies came almost by accident: he was offered the script for “Taken” but was still undecided when he found out it would shoot in France, with a French crew.
That sealed the deal for him.
“British and American crews are generally 80 percent male, but it seems like 40 to 45 percent of French crews are female, and that’s terrific,” Neeson says smiling.
As for how he manages to stay in such an incredible shape, which allows him to do this kind of roles in the first place, Liam is playing it cool.
“I keep pretty fit as a rule, but for these two films, you have to increase the push-ups and sit-ups, let’s put it that way,” he says.