One of Ireland’s most famous actors has taken a shot at one of Ireland’s most famous athletes. Liam Neeson told Men’s Health that he is no fan of UFC fighter Connor McGregor, going so far as to compare McGregor to a “little leprechaun.” McGregor, one of the highest-paid athletes in the world, is the first UFC fighter to hold UFC championships in two weight classes simultaneously.
“UFC I can’t stand,” Neeson said. “That to me is like a bar fight. I know the practitioners are like, ‘no, you’re wrong — the months of training we do …’ Why don’t you just grab a beer bottle and hit the other guy over the head? That’s the next stage of the UFC. I hate it.”
The actor continued, “That little leprechaun Conor McGregor, he gives Ireland a bad name. I know he’s fit, and I admire him for that. But I can’t take it.”
McGregor is gearing up to make the jump from UFC athlete to Hollywood action star with a role opposite Jake Gyllenhaal in Amazon Prime Video’s reimagining of the classic 1980s action movie “Road House.” The project comes from director “The Bourne Identity” and “Edge of Tomorrow” director Doug Liman.
Gyllenhaal is leading the “Road House” reboot as a former UFC fighter who takes a job as a bouncer at a roadhouse in the Florida Keys and discovers not all is perfect in the tropical paradise. McGregor is reportedly playing an original character and not a fictional version of himself. The supporting cast includes Billy Magnussen, Daniela Melchior, Gbemisola Ikumelo, Lukas Gage and Hannah Love Lanier. Filming took place last year.
Neeson is currently circling Paramount’s “The Naked Gun” reboot. His upcoming projects also include “In the Land of Saints and Sinners” and “Retribution.”