Liam Neeson might soon be stepping down from his perch atop Action Dad Mountain. But what might the next phase of his career look like? Could we be entering the era of Liam Neeson: Comedy Star?
In a recent interview, Neeson revealed that Seth MacFarlane. The man behind Family Guy and the Ted films, has approached him to star in remake of the 1988 comedy The Naked Gun. But is the star of Taken and The Commuter the right fit for a movie like that?
“I’ve been approached by Seth MacFarlane and Paramount Studios to maybe resurrect the Naked Gun films”. Neeson told People, joking that “it’ll either finish my career or bring it in another direction. I honestly don’t know.”
Despite being best known for his post-Taken work as a gruff action hero. Neeson spent most of his career working in dramas. But he’s occasionally delved into comedy as well, popping up on Life’s Too Short opposite Ricky Gervais, in a brawl sequence in Anchorman 2, voicing a character in The LEGO Movie, and working with MacFarlane on A Million Ways to Die in the West, Ted 2, Family Guy, and The Orville.
But seeing him step into the role of Frank Drebin, the lead character of the Naked Gun film series, would actually make sense considering the history of the man who originated that part. Actor Leslie Nielsen played the role in a short-lived TV series. And reprised it for all three Naked Gun films from the late 1980s until 1994. Nielsen was largely known as a dramatic actor before appearing in 1980’s Airplane!, but his work in that movie and the Naked Gun franchise ended up becoming the most beloved of his entire career. It would take an awful lot to overtake Neeson’s numerous dramas like Schindler’s List and his loads of action thrillers in the public’s mind, but hey, weirder things have happened in Hollywood.
There’s no word on whether MacFarlane will direct this Naked Gun remake or maybe just write or produce it. But despite how weird this sounds on first blush. He also feels somewhat right for this material to me. Regardless of how you feel about his work. It’s clear that he’s a joke machine with a hit-or-miss success ratio. And Naked Gun is nothing if not a vehicle for a rapid-fire number of jokes that fly almost faster than you can hear them. As always, we’ll update you with more info about this project as soon as we hear it.