The boy from Ballymena, Northern Ireland has slowly worked his way up to the top of the Hollywood food chain. From 'Excalibur' to this week's 'A Walk Among the Tombstones,' here's a look at Neeson's varied roles – and hairstyles.
After playing Jesus in two Christian films, 'Excalibur' was Liam Neeson's big break. He was cast as Gawain, a knight under the spell of the evil Morgana (Helen Mirren). Their on-screen romance continued off-screen for several years.
The Bounty (1984)
Neeson kept busy throughout the 1980s with a slew of small parts. In 'The Bounty,' Neeson (at left) holds down the villainous Captain Bligh (Anthony Hopkins) as Fletcher Christian (Mel Gibson) leads the famous mutiny.
In 1988, Neeson landed plum roles in several high-profile films. But we love to reference this rock 'n' roll stinker, in which Neeson and newcomer Julia Roberts both play second fiddle to 'Family Ties' actress Justine Bateman.
With 'Evil Dead' director Sam Raimi making his Hollywood debut, and Neeson taking on his first leading role as a completely new superhero character, the weird but wonderful 'Darkman' was a risk -- but one that paid off for all involved.
Schindler's List (1993)
Steven Spielberg chose Neeson to star in his Holocaust drama after being wowed by the actor in the Broadway play, 'Anna Christie.' As Oskar Schindler, Liam Neeson scored his first -- and so far only -- Academy Award nomination.
Rob Roy (1995)
Neeson was a star at this point, yet he remained a serious actor; the films he made in the mid-'90s reflect that synthesis. The old-fashioned Scottish adventure 'Rob Roy,' for instance, showcases the actor's effortless gravitas.
Michael Collins (1996)
For a proud Irishman like Liam Neeson, this film offered the role of a lifetime: That of Michael Collins, the Irish revolutionary who gained independence for his country – but at great political and personal cost.
Star Wars: Episode I -- The Phantom Menace (1999)
Neeson's career took another turn when George Lucas cast him as the wise and powerful Jedi, Qui-Gon Jinn. The long-awaited Star Wars prequel divided audiences, but even its harshest critics couldn't find fault in Neeson's work.
K-19: The Widowmaker (2002)
A tense submarine thriller directed by Kathryn Bigelow, 'K-19' has Neeson facing off against antagonist Harrison Ford. Audiences tittered at the stars' fake Russian accents, and the film flopped. We think it's still worth checking out.
Love Actually (2003)
Neeson's softer side comes out in this British ensemble comedy, which has gained an enormously devoted following over the years. Neeson is touching as the widowed single father who encourages his son to get a girlfriend.
Before the next round of blockbusters kicked in, Neeson found time to take on the daring role of Alfred Kinsey, the real-life 1950s sex researcher who came to have quite an open mind about his own sexuality.
Batman Begins (2005)
Neeson once again plays a mentor to a young warrior – but in this case, the warrior is Bruce Wayne (Christian Bale), and Neeson's character has far more sinister intentions.
This kidnapping thriller's unexpected success at the American box office transformed Liam Neeson into an action hero – all at the tender age of 56.
Clash of the Titans (2010)
Tragically, Natasha Richardson, Neeson's wife of almost 15 years, died after a skiing accident in early 2009. The grieving actor coped, in his words, by "running away to work," and went off to play the Greek god, Zeus, in this effects-laden epic.
The Grey (2011)
Those who flocked to 'The Grey' seeking a repeat of Neeson's 'Taken' butt-kicking got more than they bargained for with this existentialist action picture, in which Neeson portrays a suicidal man fighting for survival in the frozen north.
"Non-stop" may be a good way to describe Liam Neeson's 2014. The actor has been busier than ever, with comedic spins in 'The Lego Movie' and 'A Million Ways to Die in the West,' with a return to 'Taken'-style action in this jet-set thriller.