BY IKENNA OBIOHA
After his controversial racism remarks in an interview with The Independent on Monday, the red carpet of Liam Neeson’s upcoming movie Cold Pursuit has been cancelled. British media BBC reports that reporters were told the red carpet part of the film’s premiere was being pulled with just two hours’ notice.
What Really Happened?
In the interview, Neeson while promoting his movie recalled an experience in which he wanted to avenge the poor fate of his friend who was raped by a black man 40 years ago.
“She handled the situation of the rape in the most extraordinary way. But my immediate reaction was… I asked, did she know who it was? No. What colour were they? She said it was a black person.”
He continued: “I went up and down areas with a cosh, hoping I’d be approached by somebody – I’m ashamed to say that – and I did it for maybe a week, hoping some black bastard would come out of a pub and have a go at me about something, you know? So that I could kill him,” he said.
Although he revealed that he did not carry out any form of attack on black people and regrets his wishful thoughts, the event has caused major online backlash, especially from the black community.
British journalist Piers Morgan condemned the 66-year old actor and slammed him a hypocrite for his offensive comments. He addressed Neeson saying: “Sorry Liam Neeson, but If you talk like a murderous racist, behave like a murderous racist, and now cynically use your murderous racism to sell a movie… then you are guilty of being a murderous racist”
However stormy the events have turned out for the star, he still gains support from persons who claims his admissions were right and shouldn’t be judged for his reaction at that time.
Former footballer John Barnes defended the actor claiming that at the time of the incident, Neeson was beclouded with racial biasness instead of being racist.
Neeson’s Says He Is Not a Racist
The actor coming under great pillory told the ABC’s Good Morning show host on Tuesday that he is not a racist and only wanted people to talk about their sexual abuse experience.
We all pretend we’re all politically correct in this country… in mine, too. You sometimes just scratch the surface and you discover this racism and bigotry and it’s there.”
What if the Assailant was White?
The actor claimed that it doesn’t matter if his friend’s attacker was black or white that he would have acted same. He however said he was shocked at his response.