Liam Neeson recently revealed that he had the opportunity to portray the iconic role of James Bond in the early ’90s but that he would have been sacrificing something much bigger if he agreed to take the part.
That sacrifice being his relationship with late wife Natasha Richarson, who was strongly against the idea.
Yes, for his other half, stepping into the shoos of 007 was the make or break it point of their relationship with Liam ultimately deciding not to go for the role.
Telling Rolling Stone magazine: “They looked at a bunch of actors. Schindler’s List had come out and Barbara [Broccoli] had called me a couple of times to ask if I was interested and I said ‘yes, I would be interested’.”
However, Natasha had other plans. “My lovely wife, God rest her soul, said to me while we were shooting Nell down in the Carolinas, ‘Liam, I want to tell you something: If you play James Bond, we’re not getting married’,” he shared.
Despite the “James Bond ultimatum” as he refers to it, Liam had no hard feelings about losing out on the role, and could even see where his wife was coming from.
“Come on, there’s all those gorgeous girls in various countries getting into bed and getting out of bed, I’m sure a lot of her decision-making was based on that,” he continued.
That didn’t stop Liam from teasing Natasha behind her back, however, admitting he would often hum the theme tune and make his fingers into a gun.
It wasn’t long until Liam went on to star in his very own action movie trilogy, Taken, which proved to be a huge success.
Liam and Natasha were married for a blissful 16 years before she sadly passed away at the age of 45 in 2009 after sustaining a head injury while skiing.
Previously speaking about her death, Liam told Anderson Cooper: “It’s like a wave. You just get this profound feeling of instability.”
“The Earth isn’t stable anymore and then it passes and it becomes more infrequent, but I still get it sometimes.”