Liam Neeson reveals what made him reject James Bond role

WASHINGTON: Actor Liam Neeson, in a recent interview, revealed that he was approached to play the role of James Bond in the 1990s, but he had rejected the role as his late wife was not keen on the idea.

The 69-year-old BAFTA-nominated actor revealed that he received an ultimatum from his late wife Natasha Richardson about the potential James Bond role.

People magazine reported that the actor appeared on ‘The Late Late Show with James Corden’ on Thursday, where he admitted that he was approached by producer Barbara Broccoli about taking on the iconic role of James Bond 007, shortly after his appearance in ‘Schindler’s List’ in 1993.

But, the actor couldn’t take the offer as he had to choose between his wife and the role at that time.

“I know they were looking at various actors and I apparently was among them. However, my dear, departed wife did say to me … ‘Darling, if you’re offered James Bond and you’re going to play it, you’re not going to marry me,'” Neeson told Cordon.

Richardson died at age of 45 in 2009 from a head injury sustained while skiing at Quebec’s Mont Tremblant. The actor suffered from blunt force trauma after falling on a beginner’s slope while out with an instructor and refusing initial medical treatment after the accident.

In her loving memory, Neeson and their eldest son Micheal developed the 2020 film ‘Made in Italy’ about a father and son coping with the family matriarch’s death.

Micheal, who changed his last name in 2018 to honour his mother, said he “felt” Richardson’s presence while filming.

“When you lose somebody so close to you, sometimes you just push it away and out of your head because the thought of them hurts, but I found that’s an unhealthy thing to do. You have to remember them,” Micheal told People magazine in an earlier interview.