Today in Mad Libs, Academy Award nominee and frequent action-thriller star Liam Neeson claims that he's been approached to star in a reboot of The Naked Gun movies with none other than Family Guy creator Seth MacFarlane spearheading the effort. Speaking in an interview with People (H/T SlashFilm), Neeson revealed the news in a matter of fact way, outright saying: "I've been approached by Seth MacFarlane and Paramount Studios to maybe resurrect the Naked Gun films," before adding, "It'll either finish my career or bring it in another direction. I honestly don't know." Having just said he's retiring from action movies, this could be the next step for him as an actor.
Neeson may not be the first name you think of when you consider a hilarious performer for a potential big studio comedy, but in fact that's exactly the kind of actors they should be considering for a new Naked Gun. Created by David Zucker, Jim Abrahams, and Jerry Zucker, the original movies and Police Squad! TV series starred Leslie Nielsen who was a master of deadpan comedy and whose deliver was often what sold the jokes. This type of delivery is on full display for Neeson in one of his previous collaborations with Seth MacFarlen, Ted 2, in addition to other brief comedy roles like Ricky Gervais' Life's Too Short.
What's especially interesting about this news is that it's the first we've heard of it. No reports about Seth MacFarlane developing a new Naked Gun have made their way online in any form, but Neeson being approached certainly doesn't make it all seem like a joke (though that would be very funny on his part if it was all a ruse). MacFarlane and Neeson have collaborated together multiple times though including the feature films A Million Ways to Die in the West and Ted 2, plus TV shows The Orville and Family Guy (where he played himself twice).
The last we'd heard about traction on a new Naked Gun movie was almost eight years ago when it was reported that comedian Ed Helms would take on the role of Leslie Nielsen's Frank Drebin with Reno 911 creators Thomas Lennon and Ben Garant penning the script. In the end, it never went anywhere and the series has remained in limbo.
One thing we can hope though is that, in addition to Neeson being involved, the film finds a way to cast a respected dramatic actor as its villain. The original three movies in The Naked Gun franchise featured heavyweights like Ricardo Montalbán, Robert Goulet, and Fred Ward as their antagonists.