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Liam Neeson has starred in four action films released over the past year — Warner Bros.’ Run All Night the latest among them. At the film’s New York City premiere at AMC Loews Lincoln Square on Monday night, the cast noted what has allowed Neeson to sustain such a strong second wind in his career.
“He’s not just an actor that talks about, ‘What lines do I have today?'” said director Jaume Collet-Serra, who has worked with Neeson three times in the past four years. “He’s more of a creative partner in the process, especially when it comes to action and choreographing the fight. He really enjoys that. He used to be a boxer, and he’s still in better shape than I am.”
In Run All Night, Neeson squares off against Ed Harris, an old friend turned adversary, as he tries to protect his estranged son, played by Joel Kinnaman, from imminent danger. For both Harris and Kinnaman, the chance to work with Neeson while also portraying such fraught relationships made the film an attractive draw.
“It’s an action film, but it had relationships,” Harris told The Hollywood Reporter. “He’s been doing these kind of movies the last six years or something like that? He got cast in the first [Taken] and it really took off. He’s a wonderful actor, a really nice guy; he’s got a great quality about him. He’s easy in a way, and he’s comfortable with himself. He’s a tall, good-looking guy, so he’s kicking ass.”
“I’m just impressed with a guy like him that’s still doing it at the level he’s doing it,” Kinnaman said of Neeson. “The physicality that he has, it makes him really believable in these kinds of situations. And at the same time, he has some kind of innate goodness. He carries a pathos that even when he does bad things, you kind of feel that he’s coming from a good place.”
As for Neeson himself, he arrived to the premiere — also attended by co-stars Vincent D’Onofrio, Genesis Rodriguez and a giddy Common, still riding high off his Oscar win last month, “and I’m hoping to elevate the high, meaning, I want to take the energy and do great work out there” — clutching a thermos. When asked if the exhaustion from consecutive stunt-filled films was taking its toll, Neeson remained reserved, pointing to the recent press run he’s been on. “I’m a little bit tired tonight,” he said.
After the screening, the cast headed to Landmarc, inside the Time Warner Center, for a reunion at the afterparty.
Run All Night hits theaters March 13.
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