Excerpts from Alan Rickman’s Diaries, edited by the guard offer an inside look at the late actor’s decade-long journey through the ‘Harry Potter’ franchise, with insight into why he decided to continue playing the role of Severus Snape in all eight films.
Before production began on the series’ fifth entry, “Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix,” Rickman was forced to face health issues. The actor was diagnosed with an aggressive form of prostate cancer in 2005 and began treatment. Doctors later decided to remove his entire prostate, with surgery at Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville, Tennessee in January of the following year.
Weeks after being released from the hospital, Rickman wrote a journal entry revealing his decision to stay on as the notoriously bleak potion professor.
“Finally, yes to HP 5. The sensation is neither up nor down. The argument that wins is the argument that says, ‘See through it. It’s your story,” he wrote.
In 2007, the actor recorded his thoughts on his character’s demise, written in JK Rowling’s latest entry in the book series, “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows,” adding that he had always known about the poignant love story between his character and the mother. from Harry Potter. , lily.
“…I’m done reading the latest ‘Harry Potter’ book,” he wrote at the time. Snape dies heroically, Potter describes him to his children as one of the bravest men he has ever known and names his son Albus Severus. This was a real rite of passage. A little piece of information from Jo Rowling seven years ago – Snape loved Lily – gave me an abyss to hold onto.”
Rickman also wrote about his first meeting with Rowling, stating that he became her confidante in the history of Snape’s character.
“She nervously shows me a few glimpses of Snape’s background. To talk to her is to talk to someone who is living these stories, not inventing them,” Rickman wrote in 2000.
Rickman also gave his response after leaving the premiere of “Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone,” the franchise’s first entry.
“The film should only be shown on a big screen,” Rickman wrote. “It takes on a scale and depth that matches John Williams’s hideous score. A party afterwards in the Savoy is much more fun.”
As previously reported in June, Henry Holt and Company will release Madly Deeply: The Diaries of Alan Rickman, a collection of Rickman’s handwritten diaries, in October.
Rickman, who rose to film fame as villain Hans Gruber in 1988’s ‘Die Hard’, has played a wide variety of characters in iconic films across many genres, including ‘Truly, Madly, Deeply’, ‘Galaxy Quest’, ‘The Hitchhiker’s Guide’ to the Galaxy,” “Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street,” “Love Actually,” and “Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves.” His portrayal of the complicated Professor Severus Snape in every “Harry Potter” film made the British actor a household name.
Rickman died on January 14, 2016 in London at the age of 69. The beloved actor had a silent battle with pancreatic cancer before his death.