It’s with a heavy heart that we bring you the news that British acting veteran Alan Rickman has passed away after a battle with cancer. He was 69.
Word of Rickman’s passing was first reported by The Guardian, who noted that the actor, best known for his roles in Harry Potter and Die Hard, died in London “surrounded by his family and friends.”
Celebrated for his wicked and delightfully charming screen presence across film and theatre, Rickman’s career proved to be a late bloomer after accepting the villainous role in Die Hard opposite fellow newcomer Bruce Willis. Hans Gruber was the name and a memorable Austrian terrorist was the game, and Rickman’s performance in the seminal 1988 actioner proved to be one of the many highlights – even when he was sent tumbling off the Nakatomi Plaza.
The early 90s heralded a key role as the outrageous sheriff in Kevin Costner’s Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves, before displaying his wicked eye for comedy in Kevin Smith’s underrated gem Dogma in ’99. Only two years later, Rickman become something of a household name with his recurring role in Warner Bros.’ Harry Potter franchise, translating the character of Severus Snape from book to screen effortlessly. Indeed, in hindsight it’s difficult to imagine anyone else portraying the sarcastic yet complex wizard, and Potterheads will no doubt celebrate Rickman’s turn long after his tragic passing.
Outside of cinema, the late, great British legend walked the boards across Broadway and his native home of London, earning adulation for his deeply complex performances in Valmont and opposite Helen Mirren for a stage rendition of Cleopatra.
It’s the second shock to the system for film and music fans this week after the tragic passing of the iconic David Bowie, who also died following a battle with cancer at 69. For Alan Rickman, perhaps it’s most fitting to close out our humble eulogy with a recent quote from J.K. Rowling, who expressed her deep sadness via Twitter: “There are no words to express how shocked and devastated I am to hear of Alan Rickman’s death. He was a magnificent actor & a wonderful man.”
Source: The Guardian