The Fast And Furious star weighed in after the Northern Irish actor sparked outrage with comments he made in an interview published this week, in which he recalled once walking the streets looking to “kill’ a black man after learning his friend had been raped.
After Liam’s admission made headlines the world over, Michelle gave a questionable explanation for why she believes he should not be considered racist.
Speaking to reporters at a red carpet event (via Vanity Fair), she said: “It’s all fuckin’ bullshit. Liam Neeson is not a racist.
“Dude, have you watched Widows? His tongue was so far down Viola Davis’ throat. You can’t call him a racist ever.
“Racists don’t make out with the race that they hate, especially in the way he does with his tongue—so deep down her throat. I don’t care how good of an actor you are.”
She added: “It’s all bullshit. Ignore it. He’s not a racist. He’s a loving man. It’s all lies.”
Michelle’s remarks raised more than a fair few eyebrows on social media, with many calling them out, and others questioning why she’d felt the need to speak up in the first place, including the executive producer of How To Get Away With Murder, Shonda Rhimes...
HuffPost UK has contacted Michelle’s spokesperson for comment, and is awaiting a response.
The backlash against Liam began on Monday when the Independent’s interview was first published, in which he said: “My immediate reaction [to learning his friend was raped] was… I asked, did she know who it was? No. What colour were they? She said it was a black person.
“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’ [two words which the newspaper refers to him as using air quotes as he said] would come out of a pub and have a go at me about something, you know? So that I could... kill him.”
Following this, Liam appeared on Good Morning America in an attempt to clear up the controversy, in which he insisted that he is “not racist”, adding: “If she’d have said an Irishman or a Scot or a Brit or a Lithuanian, I know it’d have had the same effect. I was trying to show honour and stand up for my dear friend in this terrible medieval fashion.
“I’m an intelligent guy and that’s why it shocked me when I came down to earth. Luckily, no violence occurred, ever. Thanks be to god.”
The red carpet premiere for his new film Cold Pursuit was subsequently cancelled just hours before it was scheduled to go ahead, due to the controversy.
The Taken actor later pulled out of a planned TV appearance on Stephen Colbert’s US talk show.