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The Age / Life - Entertain

Liam Neeson says there is a 'witch hunt' against men in Hollywood

Liam Neeson says the #metoo movement has led to a "witch hunt" of actors and celebrities on television.

Liam Neeson says the #metoo movement has led to a "witch hunt" of actors and celebrities on television.

The actor told The Late Late Show on RTE, an Irish television program, "there's some people, famous people, being suddenly accused of touching some girl's knee, or something, and suddenly they're being dropped from their program or something."

Diane Lane and Liam Neeson, cast members in the film "Mark Felt: The Man Who Brought Down the White House". Photo: Chris Pizzello

His comments sparked angry criticism on Twitter. 

Uh-oohhh. #LiamNeeson, you did not just defend Spacey & call some of the stuff he did superstitions?
So many people saying he's right, it's "childish stuff"? Imagine someone grabbing the breast of your wife / girlfriend / mother? Repeatedly. And ask if it's still childish. https://t.co/yake7cMf41

— Kenny Gaughan (@manwith3buttock) January 13, 2018

Asked on the chat show on Friday what he thought about the string of sexual misconduct allegations against people in the movie industry, Neeson said, "it's a bit of a witch hunt.

He said that he was "on the fence" about allegations levelled at Dustin Hoffman.

"When you're doing a play and you're with your family, other actors and technicians, you do silly things. You do silly things and it becomes superstitious. If you don't do it every night you think it's going to jinx the show," the Irish star said.

"I think Dustin Hoffman... I'm not saying I've done similar things like what he did. Apparently he touched a girl's breast and stuff, but it's childhood stuff."

Actress Anna Graham Hunter alleged last year Hoffman groped her and made inappropriate comments when she was a 17-year-old intern on the set of the 1985 TV movie Death Of A Salesman.

Playwright Cori Thomas accused him of exposing himself to her in a New York hotel room in 1980, when she was 16.

On the Irish chat show, Neeson also defended US radio presenter and writer Garrison Keillor, who was dropped by Minnesota Public Radio last year over an allegation of "inappropriate behaviour".

"There is a movement happening and it's healthy and it's across every industry. The focus seems to be on Hollywood at the minute, but it's across every industry."