Liam Neeson event canned after actor's comments

Lionsgate on Tuesday canned the red carpet for the New York City premiere of Liam Neeson’s new film “Cold Pursuit,” after the actor admitted decades-old thoughts of wanting to kill some “black bastard” when a close friend told him she was raped.

Neeson made the comments during an interview with The Independent, which was published Monday. The 66-year-old actor said he experienced a “primal urge to lash out,” after a friend told him she was raped by a black man.

“After that, there were some nights I went out deliberately into black areas in this city, looking to be set upon so that I could unleash physical violence. I did it for maybe four or five times. It really shocked me, this primal urge I had. It shocked me and it hurt me. I did seek help. I went to a priest. I had two very good friends I talked to, and believe it or not — power walking — to get rid of this.”

IS LIAM NEESON'S CAREER IN TROUBLE AFTER ADMITTING HE ONCE WANTED TO 'KILL' A BLACK MAN?

Neeson appeared on “Good Morning America” Tuesday morning where he said his comments were taken out of context. He told interviewer Robin Roberts he is not a racist and moved past his desire for violence after seeking help from a priest and from friends.

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Lionsgate has not commented but a source cited by Variety confirmed that the entertainment company decided to pull the plug on the red carpet in the wake of Neeson’s controversy.

A premiere of the film without the red carpet was still scheduled for New York City's AMC Loews Lincoln Square, according to The Hollywood Reporter. “Cold Pursuit,” a remake of a 2014 Norwegian film, is slated for a wider release on Friday.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.