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Liam Neeson: I mold my voice to roles

Published 16/08/2015

Liam Neeson
Liam Neeson

Liam Neeson has spoken about the different voices he's used for famous roles.

The 63-year-old actor has reinvented himself as an action star over the last seven years, with lead parts in movies like Taken, Non-Stop and A Walk Among the Tombstones.

He's helmed many different roles over his career though and is more than aware how important it is to get a character's voice right.

"I think you can work on a certain gravitas with a voice. I haven't consciously decided on it. In Taken, he's a man of few words, lots of action. He never struck me as someone with a high-pitched voice," he told US Esquire.

"I remember Steven [Spielberg, director] wanted a rich cigarette, cognac voice [for Schindler's List]. I never drank cognac. I used to be a smoker, so maybe I had a residue left. But it was a beautiful script by Steve Zaillian. There was maybe one comma changed in that."

His vocal skills were put to good use in Kahlil Gibran's The Prophet, where he voiced poet Mustafa.

Liam was familiar with the work and got a grasp on poetry from a film he did a few years ago. In the time since he'd read The Prophet as a teenager, the actor thinks his experiences helped him cultivate the role.

"[When I read it] I thought it was beautiful, but it bounced off me - I didn't have life experience. Now that I'm 63, I'm the father of two boys, reading it again, it's a richer experience.

"It did," he said when asked if wisdom changed how he recited the poem. "I worked very closely with [Prophet director] Roger Allers on that. More on the interpretation."

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