Liam Neeson spends quality time with his two sons

Gemma Strong

Liam Neeson and his sons were in high spirits as they enjoyed a rare night out at an ice hockey game this week. Liam, 63, and his two boys, Michael, 20, and 19-year-old Daniel, were spotted in the audience watching the New York Islanders take on the Boston Bruins at Madison Square Gardens, and were clearly enjoying their time together, chatting and laughing as they watched the action.

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Liam Neeson enjoyed an evening out with sons Michael (centre) and Daniel (left)

Liam is very close to his sons, who he shared with his late wife Natasha Richardson. And it seems that Michael is following in his famous parents' footsteps, following the announcement that he will star alongside Jonathan Rhys Meyers in The Rising: 1916.

The budding actor has previously stayed away from the big screen, and is the curator of a fashion art gallery in London – he regularly returns to New York to see his dad and his brother. But he was recently cast as Irish patriot and revolutionary Michael Collins – 20 years after his dad played the same role in the 1996 historical biopic, Michael Collins.

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Michael is following in his famous father's footsteps

Michael has previously admitted that his father wasn't keen on him pursuing a film career, although his late mother Natasha had always told him to follow his dreams.

"Dad was like, 'Please become a carpenter or something,'" he told the Evening Standard last year. "On my mum’s side, I was encouraged to do whatever I wanted.

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Liam has a very close bond with both his boys

"I've done a couple of drama courses. At the beginning I'd be shaking. Dad always said. 'Just take three deep breaths', and it does work, although you don't want anyone to see you doing it. But then you get lost in what you're doing and get that rush."

Despite his dad's reluctance, Michael said a move into acting was somewhat inevitable. "My inner actor is in there somewhere, lingering in the shadows," he said.

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