PARA USA provided guns to the new Liam Neeson film, Taken 3. (Well, it’s a new version of the same old Neeson film, as the numeral indicates). And now they have egg on their face, as what they thought was a great marketing opportunity turned toxic. The naturalized American star went out of his way to slime them, other gun manufacturers, and all their customers, in his promotional interviews for the show.
According to the Daily Caller, Para USA has taken to Facebook to apologize to the community and vow never to provide another firearm for a Neeson film. (We can’t check this as we can’t seem to get the PARA facebook page to load, but we can’t stand Facebook anyway, even if one of our clients forbids us from keeping an account there — long story — anyway). Per the Caller, PARA said:
PARA USA regrets its decision to provide firearms for use in the film “Taken 3.” While the film itself is entertaining, comments made by its Irish-born star during press junkets reflect a cultural and factual ignorance that undermines support of the Second Amendment and American liberties. We will no longer provide firearms for use in films starring Liam Neeson and ask that our friends and partners in Hollywood refrain from associating our brand and products with his projects. Further, we encourage our partners and friends in the firearms industry to do the same.
Note that, although Liam Neeson was born in Ireland, previously lived in London, he became a US citizen whilst living in New York at least five years ago. Unlike 99.9999% of Americans, he’s an honorary Officer of the Order of the British Empire, entitling him to use the postnominal letters OBE. (The order’s motto is For God and the Empire. Sounds a bit… off, to small-r republican ears, but hey, it’s his life and he can do what he wants with it). And, of course, he’s entitled to his opinion.
But it looks to us as if Liam Neeson does not want the half to two-thirds of Americans who own guns to attend his movies.
Transmission received, Irish-American brother.
We’ll do what we can to make him happy, including skipping this latest formulaic bloodbath, for which he was paid $20 mil. (To be sure, we weren’t going to see it anyway. It has a 10% rating on Rotten Tomatoes, suggesting that those who did drop $10 or $15 on a ticket have regrets. Apparently many of the attendees are folks who go to see American Sniper and find it sold-out. Seriously, if you’re in that kind of a jam, try Paddington).
While we would (and did) put our unique and special epidermis on the line for his right to express himself, there’s something mighty odd about an actor who has reveled in playing characters responsible for hundreds if not thousands of onscreen killings, calling for firearms bans, as he did while bad-mouthing the United States to an Arab newspaper recently.
That’s certainly odd. But is that as odd as the Social-Security-age Neeson creakily playing an action hero? He was already visibly over the hill at 60 in the creaky Taken 2. What’s he going to do in Taken 4, run his Lark over the terrorists? Tune ‘em up with his walker?
Let’s face it, as an old man ordering a kid off his lawn, Clint Eastwood retired that setup for all time in Gran Torino. And went on to a directing career of some significance.
As far as PARA goes, we’re not sure how PARA-USA relates to the original PARA-Ordnance, but that was (is?) a Canadian company. (We think they were the first to double-stack a 1911). In any event, it’s always painful when a well-meant marketing move backfires on you. Our taste in .45s runs more to old 1911s or a Norwegian Model 1914, but we almost want to buy a PARA just to buck these fellows up. They do have a nice DAO compact in .45 or 9mm, the LDA Officer Model. We haven’t tried it but it looks tempting.