Irish Hollywood star Liam Neeson says he is considering converting to Islam.
Neeson was raised a Catholic and is named after a priest in Ireland. He has played iconic roles throughout his career including the Irish revolutionary Michael Collins, and he famously played a cleric in the film Cal.
He’s also starred in a string of Hollywood blockbusters such as Batman, Star Wars and Schindler’s List.
The actor, who comes from Antrim in Northern Ireland, has been filming in Istanbul, Turkey, and said that Islamic prayer “got into his spirit”.
He said: “The Call to Prayer happens five times a day and for the first week it drives you crazy, and then it just gets into your spirit and it’s the most beautiful, beautiful thing. There are 4,000 mosques in the city. Some are just stunning and it really makes me think about becoming a Muslim.”
Neeson has suffered difficult times in recent years after his wife died on a skiing trip in 2009. He admitted it left him questioning his faith.
He said: “I was reared a Catholic, but I think every day we ask ourselves, not consciously, what we are doing on this planet? What’s it all about? I’m constantly reading books on God or the absence of God and atheism.”
The Irish star is no stranger to speaking about religion in public.
He caused controversy in 2010 after disputing claims that Narnia lion, Aslan, is based on Christ. Neeson provided the voiceover for Aslan in the film.
“Aslan symbolises a Christ-like figure but he also symbolises for me Mohammed, Buddha and all the great spiritual leaders and prophets over the centuries. That’s what Aslan stands for as well as a mentor figure for kids – that’s what he means for me.”
Neeson stars in his new film, The Grey, as a plane crash survivor battling the elements to make it home to his family. The Grey is out in cinemas now.