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Liam Neeson and Natasha Richardson's Son Is Following in Their Footsteps

Micheál Richardson and his dad star in a movie that honors the late actor.

Tragedy struck in 2009 when Natasha Richardson died at age 46 after a skiing accident. At the time, she was married to fellow actor Liam Neeson, and they had two sons, Micheál, who was 14, and Daniel, who was 13. Now, 12 years later, Micheál Richardson is following in his parents' footsteps with his own acting career.

The 25-year-old spoke about joining the family business in a new interview with The Times. He shared what it was like working alongside his father in the 2020 movie Made in Italy, the story of which echoes his own experience with losing his mother. He also talked about the way Natasha's memory lives on with him.

Read on to find out more about Neeson and Richardson's son, and for more on famous families, check out 13 Celebrities You Had No Idea Were Related.

Made in Italy is deeply personal to Micheál and his father.

Liam Neeson and Micheál Richardson in "Made in Italy"
IFC Films/YouTube

Micheál (pronounced meehall) stars with Neeson in the dramedy Made in Italy, which was released last summer. It follows a father and son, Robert and Jack, who go to Italy to repair a home that was owned by Robert's wife and Jack's mother before she died.

The script was passed along to Neeson because of how it resembles his own experience with loss, and he suggested his son star along with him. Still, the actor worried that working on the project could be painful for Micheál.

"No, I wasn't traumatized at all," Micheál told The Times, however. "There was so much love for the script, even among the crew. You know, people lose loved ones. That's a part of life and there were a lot of people involved who had. So there was this really kind of warm, vulnerable energy on set. At the times when it had to be emotional it made it sort of meaningful, in a way, if that makes sense. Also I feel it was sort of like a shedding. We shed a layer of loss in a way by creating this."

Read about another child of an actor who is starting his career after loss in See James Gandolfini's Lookalike Son as Tony in the "Sopranos" Prequel.

Micheál has been acting in movies for years.

Micheál Richardson and Lindsay Duncan in "Made in Italy"
IFC Films/YouTube

Prior to Made in Italy, Micheál had a few other roles. He popped up in Anchorman 2, appeared in the Natalie Portman film Vox Lux, and was in another movie with his dad, Cold Pursuit. He also acted on the series Big Dogs.

Micheál didn't always know he wanted to follow his parents into performing; he thought he might work in fashion. "I think acting is an amazing profession because it requires you to look at yourself and learn a lot about yourself," he said of his career to The Times. "Not a lot of professions allow you to do that. It's a sort of inward discovery of who you are. I think I'd have a really hard time acting if I didn't know myself."

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His professional name is a tribute to his mom.

Natasha Richardson and Liam Neeson at the 2005 Golden Globes
Featureflash Photo Agency /

Micheál's name was originally Micheál Neeson, but he changed his surname to Richardson a few years ago. "It was mainly like a homage to my mother, a way to carry her with me," he told The Times. "Going into this industry, carrying her last name, it definitely inspires me and it is also comforting."

In addition to Neeson and Richardson, Micheál has another famous name in his family: His grandmother, Natasha's mother, is actor Vanessa Redgrave. In 2018, Redgrave told the Daily Mail of her grandson's name change, "That wasn't because he wanted to avoid his father's fame, which is enormous. He wanted to hold his mother close to him—because she was a remarkable actress. Absolutely remarkable."

Read about another acting family in How Mary-Kate & Ashley Stopped Elizabeth Olsen From Being a Child Star.

Micheál also rewatches his mother's movies to remember her.

Micheál Richardson, Natasha Richardson, and Daniel Neeson at opening night of "Billy Elliot The Musical" on Broadway in 2008
Bruce Glikas/FilmMagic via Getty Images

In The Times interview, Micheál shared that his favorite movie of Natasha's is The Parent Trap, and that he is thankful that he is able to watch his mom on film.

"When it's unexpected and it's just a complete freak accident, it really sort of messes with your mind, whether you believe in fate or not," he said of losing her. "It can send you for a bit of a head spin, and so you just latch on to the tiny little memories, whether it's her laugh or her energy in the room or her cooking."

For another celeb kid stepping out from their parent's shadow, See Pierce Brosnan's Lookalike Son Paris on His Latest Magazine Cover.

Lia Beck
Lia Beck is a writer living in Richmond, Virginia. In addition to Best Life, she has written for Refinery29, Bustle, Hello Giggles, InStyle, and more. Read more
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