liam neeson hangover2 Liam Neeson replaces Mel Gibson in 'Hangover 2'Mel Gibson is out, and Liam Neeson is in for “The Hangover 2.”

Neeson will take the cameo role initially intended for Gibson in the film. The “Taken” and “Schindler’s List” star will play a tattoo artist in Bangkok, where the sequel takes hapless heroes Bradley Cooper, Ed Helms and Zach Galifianakis.

“I just got a call to do a one-day shoot on ‘Hangover 2’ as a tattooist in Thailand, and that’s about all I know about it,” Neeson tells Variety. “I just laughed my leg off when I saw ‘The Hangover.'”

Director Todd Phillips had originally cast Gibson in the role, but after Galifianakis and members of the crew protested Gibson’s involvement, he let Gibson go. (Cooper, who starred with Neeson in “The A-Team,” asked Neeson to come aboard.)

]]>that he wasn’t comfortable with Gibson working on the film. In a statement released Thursday (Oct. 21), Phillips said Gibson “would have been great in the movie” and that he had the backing of Warner Bros. president Jeff Robinov. “But I realize filmmaking is a collaborative effort,” he adds, “and this decision ultimately did not have the full support of my entire cast and crew.” Neeson’s publicist, Alan Nierob — who, incidentally, also represents Gibson — sarcastically told TMZ Friday that Neeson will be joining the cast “pending clearance of cast and crew background check.” “The Hangover 2” is scheduled for release next May. Follow Zap2it and Zap2itRick on Twitter and Zap2it on Facebook for the latest TV, movie and celebrity news. Photo credit: Getty Images