Liam Neeson Reveals How He Felt About How Many People He Killed in ‘Taken’

Liam Neeson normally plays a heroic character in his action movies, but he has stacked up a massive body count. In Taken, Neeson mows down anyone who gets in his way as he tries to find his daughter. While the actor does a great job of playing hardened protagonists, Neeson himself isn’t quite as cold as many of his characters.

Liam Neeson goes after the men who abducted his daughter in ‘Taken’

Liam Neeson attends the South Korea premiere of his movie Taken 2
Liam Neeson | Chung Sung-Jun/Getty Images

In Taken, Neeson plays Byan Mills, a retired CIA operative who goes after a group of human traffickers who kidnapped his daughter (Maggie Grace) and her friend (Katie Cassidy). Nothing is more threatening than a man trying to protect his daughter and the body count piles up. It’s also the movie that gave us Neeson’s “I have a very particular set of skills” speech, which enshrined him as an action star. 

The first Taken was a success at the box office and is followed up by two sequels: Taken 2 and Taken 3. Unfortunately, the sequels didn’t capture the same magic as the first and were both duds with critics and audiences. However, the Taken series launched Neeson as an action hero and the actor now appears in several action movies every year. 

The ‘Batman Begins’ actor felt embarrassed by how many people he killed in ‘Taken’

In an interview with Screen Rant, the Star Wars actor was asked how he felt about the massive body count he’s amassed in his film career. Neeson laughed at this and answered by recalling a time when someone mentioned how many people he kills in Taken

“I had a driver when I was doing Taken, the first Taken movie 15 years ago I think it was, and we were shooting in LA for the first week, and at the end of the first week, my driver as he dropped me off at the hotel, he said, “Mr. Neeson, can I ask you a question?” I said, “Yeah, sure.” He says, “I’ve started to read the script of Taken, I’ve got to page 40, I think he said. It says you’ve taken the lives of 26 people.” [laughs] I didn’t know how to answer that. I felt quite embarrassed. They said in such a way as if, “Are you sure you’ve read this script? Because you do nasty things to people.”

It is interesting how we don’t often think about how many people action heroes kill, but it’s because they are labeled as villains. We want Neeson to succeed and save his daughter, which means that the men who took her have to be killed. 

Liam Neeson has killed plenty of bad guys in all of his action movies

Since Taken, Neeson has taken on many roles where his character has a high kill number. He has starred in dozens of action movies including Cold Pursuit, Non-Stop, Unknown, Honest Thief, Ice Road, and The Commuter. Each of these movies features Neeson as a ruthless hero who will do whatever it takes to stop the villains. 

In 2022, he already starred in Blacklight, which debuted in February. His next action movie, Memory, arrives in theaters on April 29. 

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