Liam Neeson will soon have made major appearances in three films released this year (The Grey, Wrath of the Titans and this week's Battleship). However, the fan-fave Irishman's most-anticipated vehicle, Taken 2, has yet to hit the scene.
Taken co-writers Luc Beeson and Robert Mark Kamen joined forces yet again on the script for Taken 2; directorial duties on the sequel were handed over to Olivier Megaton, another alum of House Besson - who previously helmed Transporter 3 and Colombiana. Also returning alongside Neeson as members of the Taken 2 cast are Famke Janssen and Maggie Grace, plus new additions like popular character actor Rade Sherbedgia.
In an interview with EW, Neeson shed light on where Bryan Mills is at in life (following the events of Taken):
"I’ve [as Bryan Mills] taken a job over in Istanbul looking after a sheik who is there, and afterward I discover that my wife’s going through a very bad time with her new husband. So I suggest she and my daughter come over for a few days and hang out with me in this amazing city. And then… [laughs] all this s—t happens, of course."
We recently spoke with Grace about her empowering roles in Besson productions - a trend which continues with the Taken sequel, wherein her character, Kim Mills, has to help rescue her father, after the latter is kidnapped by vengeful criminals (something Neeson also addressed):
"I’m taken — let’s put it that way. They kidnap him to humiliate him, torture him, and ultimately bring him back to the village in Albania where the boys from the original film came from. With the help of my daughter… she wants to help me escape from where these bad guys have me."
That's not to say the man with "a particular set of skills" is going to take his kidnapping lying down - as evidenced by the first photos of Neeson back in action as Mills, from Taken 2:
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The original Taken being such a pleasant surprise - coupled with the disappointing nature of previous Besson-written films overseen by Megaton - have left many people skeptical that Taken 2 can bottle lightning once again. On the other hand: not only does Neeson remain as fiery an onscreen presence as ever, but even the weaker Besson-backed action/thrillers generally offer some memorable entertainment.
As demonstrated by this year's Lockout - sometimes, a great lead is all a Besson action movie needs to avoid being a disaster. If nothing else, Taken 2 certainly has that working in its favor.
Taken 2 opens in theaters around the U.S. on October 5th, 2012.
Source: Entertainment Weekly