BY: Rohn Romulo
LIAM Neeson’s larger-than-life screen presence, honed as an action hero in the Taken films, as well as his unheralded facility for comedy, came in handy for his portrayal of High T in Columbia Pictures’ new action-adventure Men in Black: International.
In the film, the newly minted Agent M (Tessa Thompson) is assigned to work in MIB London, under the paternal command of High T (Neeson), where she’ll join the near-mythic Agent H (Chris Hemsorth) in pursuit of a powerful mole inside the MIB organization.
High T ascended to the position of the head of the London branch after teaming with H years earlier to rescue the Earth from an alien threat. Now, High T is preparing to retire, but before he does he must oversee the efforts to bring the planet-threatening infiltrator to justice.
“We had already cast Chris Hemsworth, who’s pretty imposing looking, so we were looking for an actor who could match that,” remembers executive producer E. Bennett Walsh. “Audiences are going to understand and enjoy that pairing right away.”
Pointing to Neeson’s less-known qualities, producer Walter E. Parkes adds that, “Much like with Tommy Lee Jones as Agent K in the original MIB films, we wanted to cast actors who could do comedy, as opposed to casting comic actors. Liam is a consummate actor with big comedy chops.”
Hemsworth appreciated what Neeson brought to the dynamic between H and High T. “High T is the father figure H never had, so they have a very close bond. Liam made sure that the father-son relationship and mentorship was clear. It’s at the heart of the film.”
Liam Neeson has appeared in over 70 films, including Schindler’s List, the blockbuster Taken trilogy, Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace, Batman Begins, Love Actually and Gangs of New York. Over the course of his career, Neeson’s films have grossed over $7 billion worldwide.
He is a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador and a proud father of two sons.
In Philippine cinemas June 12, Men in Black: International is distributed by Columbia Pictures, local office of Sony Pictures Releasing International. Use the hashtag #MIBInternational
About Men in Black: International
The Men in Black have expanded to cover the globe, but so have the scum of the universe. And to keep us safe, decorated Agent H (Chris Hemsworth) and determined rookie M (Tessa Thompson) are partnered – an unlikely pairing that just might work. As they face a new alien threat that can take the form of anyone, including MIB agents, they must join forces on a globetrotting adventure to save the agency and ultimately the world.
Building upon the idea that there are aliens from other worlds living among us, MIB: International introduces new agents, weapons, aliens and locations, while bringing together some of today’s most in-demand and talented actors, including Chris Hemsworth and Tessa Thompson as the titular heroes, Agents H and M, with Emma Thompson reprising her role as the head of MIB, and Liam Neeson, Rebecca Ferguson, Kumail Nanjiani also taking on key roles.
Walter F. Parkes and Laurie MacDonald return as the franchise’s “guardians,” having produced all four films, starting with 1997’s Men in Black, and have brought on board director F. Gary Gray, whose work encompasses epic action and thrills (The Fate of the Furious), raucous comedy (Friday) and galvanizing drama (Straight Outta Compton) to bring scale, laughs and a unique vision to the sequel.