Given how particular his set of skills is, Bryan Mills isn’t a hero you can just place in any movie. “Taken,” on its own, was enough of a surprise for star Liam Neeson, producer Luc Besson and the rest of the creative minds involved — how on Earth were they going to be able to top themselves in a sequel?
“I was very wary,” Neeson admitted to MTV News about his feelings going into “Taken 2,” his latest action thriller in theaters now. Even though he was also “a little bit excited,” the Irish actor could not imagine a scenario in which a sequel to the first film’s story — in which Neeson’s retired black ops character kills his way across France to find and rescue his kidnapped daughter — would make any kind of sense.
Indeed, even the success of the original “Taken” was unexpected for Neeson. “We knew that we had made a really good, compact, European thriller in the first one, that would have a commercial life of some sort — before disappearing into DVD land,” he said. But thanks to what Neeson described as “an extraordinary PR job” by distributor 20th Century Fox, “Taken” went on to earn over $200 million at the worldwide box office. And now, it’s generated a sequel, one that ultimately made sense to Neeson.
“They came up with a storyline set in Istanbul and I thought it was good,” he said, adding that his co-stars Famke Janssen and Maggie Grace were also on board with the new idea. “I wouldn’t have done it without the two girls.”
But as Neeson has already mentioned, “Taken 2″ appears to be the end for Mills and friends. Well, at least for Mills himself; Neeson sees a way that the films could go forward, just not with him in the lead.
“I think Famke is keen to do a third one, and she could do it very well. Her and Maggie. Maybe they should,” he mused, before joking, “They can call me for advice every now and then!”
Check out everything we’ve got on “Taken 2.”