Star Wars: Qui-Gon Actor Liam Neeson Shows Off Original Phantom Menace Lightsaber

Actor Liam Neeson may have only played Qui-Gon Jinn in one entry into the Star Wars saga, but it's clearly a role that was dear to his heart, as he recently appeared on The Late Late Show with James Corden to show off his original lightsaber prop from Star Wars: The Phantom Menace. With the prop mounted to a piece of wood, Neeson also noted that the prop was mounted with a plaque reading the film's original name, "The Beginning," seemingly implying that it was a relic handed over to him when shooting on the project had wrapped and before the prequel earned its new moniker.

"This has been to Tatooine and back many, many times. If I turn it this way, it'll show a certain lightsaber that I used in the film The Phantom Menace," Neeson shared while showing off the prop. "It was originally gonna be called 'The Beginning' and it says on it, July-October '97. So that was my lightsaber as Qui-Gon Jinn, the Jedi Master, just plugging that. So that's the one."

Neeson also went on to address one mystery surrounding the weapons that audiences weren't entirely aware of prior to the prequel trilogy. With the number of lightsabers in the original films being quite small, some fans wondered how the devices were actually activated, which included theories that wielders used their Force abilities to ignite them. Neeson, however, was quick to point out that lightsabers do have buttons to ignite them.

"And everybody thinks, 'Oh yeah, you turn it on with just your thoughts, right?' I say, 'No, it's a red button. There it is. It's just a red button,'" Neeson joked.

Despite only playing the character in one film, fans are still hoping that Neeson could return to the franchise in some capacity. Interestingly, Neeson recently admitted that he's never been approached about playing the character again.

"I’ve done the voice for Qui-Gon Jinn in a couple of the animated versions of it," Neeson revealed to Collider. "I can’t remember the names of them. Myself and Sam Jackson did our Jedi knights for those. I think I did two of them. But on film, I haven’t been approached, no. I haven’t really been following them, to be honest. I don’t know if they’ve come to an end. I heard they did a film of Harrison [Ford]’s character, Han Solo, and that there was a bit of trouble with that."


Stay tuned for details on Qui-Gon's possible future in the franchise.

Would you like to see Neeson return to the series? Let us know in the comments below or contact Patrick Cavanaugh directly on Twitter to talk all things Star Wars and horror!