Taken stalwart Liam Neeson on Charlie Hebdo and weapon control: 'There's too many f**king guns out there'

The 62-year-old actor dismissed the idea that watching violent films, like Taken, glamorised violence and inspired killers

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The Independent Online

Often seen on the big screen creeping through corridors with a handgun on the end of his outstretched arms, Liam Neeson is something of an action film constant.

But the 62-year-old actor, best known for his role as Bryan Mills in the Taken series, takes great issue with the culture of gun violence and lack of weapon control.

“There's just too many f**king guns out there,” he told Gulf News when asked about the recent terror attacks in Paris at the office of satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo.

“Especially in America. I think the population is like, 320 million? There's over 300 million guns. Privately owned, in America.”

He went on to describe the situation as a “f**king disgrace”, but declined to go into detail over US police responsibility for gun crime.

He also dismissed the idea that watching violent films, like Taken, glamorised violence and inspired killers.

 

“A character like Bryan Mills going out with guns and taking revenge: it's fantasy. It's in the movies, you know? I think it can give people a great release from stresses in life and all the rest of it, you know what I mean? It doesn't mean they're all going to go out and go, 'Yeah, let's get a gun!'”

Growing up watching cowboy films, he pointed out, had not transformed him into a murderous fanatic.

Neeson also offered his condolences to the victims of the shootings in France, which claimed the lives of 17 in three days. Among the dead were four of the country’s best loved political cartoonists and six other journalists, as well as two police officers.

“First off, my thoughts and prayers and my heart are with the deceased, and certainly with all of France,” he said.

“I've got a lot of dear friends in Paris.”