We reported earlier that Tony-winning actress Natasha Richardson had been rushed to the hospital in New York following a head injury sustained from a skiing accident. Unfortunately, that story has come to a tragic end as the actress passed away last night from complications from her injury. Sources say that Natasha’s family, including husband, actor Liam Neeson, and her mother, legendary actress Vanessa Redgrave, were able to spend time with her Tuesday evening before she was removed from life support on Wednesday.
Liam Neeson and Natasha Richardson were a love story made in film and stage heaven. It's a love story that started on Broadway when they were both set to star in a 1993 revival of "Anna Christie." Richardson knew of Neeson’s rising star, suggested he be cast in the role of the Irish sailor for which her tormented heroine would fall and evidently called the actor repeatedly until he agreed to take the role. At the time, Richardson was married to producer Robert Fox and Neeson was a Hollywood bachelor, linked to many popular female stars. The decision to star in the play together proved to be a powerful one for both stars as their chemistry onstage earned rave reviews from critics and Tony nominations for both. The chemistry between the two stars brought the two into a full-fledged affair offstage and with gossip columns tagging along, Richardson ended her four-year marriage to Fox a month after closing night. She would later say of Neeson’s past as a bachelor, "I'm pleased that women fall in love with him because I know why."
Neeson flew off to film Schindler’s List in 1993 and realized while they were apart that he really loved Richardson, having said, "That was when I knew I really loved this person," he said. "I thought, 'This is real and genuine and is something that has to be protected.'" Richardson boarded a plane to Poland after Neeson wrapped filming and soon after the two purchased a old farmhouse in Millbrook in upstate New York where they were married in July 1994. Richardson’s own mother, legendary actress Vanessa Redgrave, walked her daughter down the aisle. The couple would go on to have two sons, Micheal and Daniel, and strong film and stage careers.
Tonight it is said that Broadway will dim its lights for one of its beloved stars. Neeson’s rep released a statement for the grieving family: "Liam Neeson, his sons, and the entire family are shocked and devastated by the tragic death of their beloved Natasha. They are profoundly grateful for the support, love and prayers of everyone, and ask for privacy during this very difficult time."
We here at YourTango would like to offer our condolences to Neeson, Redgrave and the family. As a publication dedicated to finding love, we honor one of Hollywood and Broadway’s greatest love stories as it comes to a close.