RIP Alan Rickman

Alan Rickman: One of the Best Actors of His Generation

I am quite shocked and saddened to hear of Alan Rickman’s passing today. An incredibly talented actor, he always delivered an amazing performance in any film.

He is most famous for his role as Severus Snape in Harry Potter. I remember reading at one time that author J.K.Rowling was so entranced by his performance in the first movie that she started writing lines for the character Snape for the joy of imagining Alan Rickman deliver them. She also told him, in confidence, what would happen in the series so that that he could portray Snape properly.

Some of my favorite Rickman roles to watch in movies include Colonel Brandon in Sense & Sensibility, Alexander Dane in the hilarious Galaxy Quest (a comic send-up of Star Trek fandom), the chilling terrorist mastermind Hans Gruber in the first Die Hard movie. He could add fun to any movie, no matter how plodding, as he did with his deadpan delivery of very funny lines as Sheriff George of Nottingham in Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves. (“That’s it then. Cancel the kitchen scraps for lepers and orphans, no more merciful beheadings, and call off Christmas!“)

There are some Alan Rickman movies that are still on my to-watch list: Perfume (based on the book by Patrick Suskind), Bottle Shock, Quigley Down Under, and a Song of Lunch*.

Thank you for all the wonderful moments on screen, Alan.  You will be missed but never forgotten.

*hat tip Elliesmom
thanks to jadzia for video
cross-posted, with edits, from

Open Thread.

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148 Responses to RIP Alan Rickman

  1. votermom says:

    A silly fan song video from 2009

  2. leslie says:

    I saw this and thought about what a treasure we lost today. I then reminded myself of our great good fortune to have had this treasure in our lives for so many years.

  3. mcnorman says:

    So very sad. He was a very gifted actor. I loved him as the bad Hans Gruber in Die Hard. Actually, I enjoyed him in anything that he did.

    • votermom says:

      Oh my goodness – just realised that I wrote Blix instead of Gruber on my post!:facepalm:
      Fixed now.

    • Mt.Laurel says:

      This was a shock. A truly gifted actor. His characters stick with you.

      He had me years ago with his portrayal of Obadiah Slope in the Barchester Chronicles. Saw him in Liaisons on stage. It was spellbinding.

      When I first saw Die Hard, I kept trying to place to voice and actually sat through it a second time until I “got” it. Perfect foil for Bruce Wllis.

      • votermom says:

        Is Barchester Chronicles good? I just checked and my lib has it

        • leslie says:

          I’ve just returned from the library and I was able to check out the Barchester Chronicles and the Hitchhikers Guide to the Universe as well.

        • Mt.Laurel says:

          It has an excellent cast including Donald Pleasence, Clive Swift and Susan Hampshire. It is from the 1980s (was shown on Masterpiece) so it is a slower pace but I still enjoy it and it follows the book rather well (although in the book Obadiah lands a rich widow at the end and lives happily ever after – not shown in this adaptation). Alan, as I recall shows up in the second episode and the pace picks up a bit.

          My mother loved this mini series and noticed Rickman from the get go. In fact, this is the role I thought of when he was cast as Snape.

  4. leslie says:

    I’m going to the library to see what movies of his I can find…
    I saw this a while ago but felt I’d usurped the last thread. But it is a beautiful tribute to him.

    • votermom says:

      What movie is the one with wings?

    • Mt.Laurel says:

      If you liked the softer characterization of Brandon in Sense and Sensibility, check out Truly, Madly, Deeply. Have a box of tissues ready.

      • leslie says:

        Isn’t that the truth? It is one of most favorite movies. I just mentioned that in watching the first few segments of it on YouTube, I was tearful. It is the umpteenth time I’ve seen it.

    • DeniseVB says:

      Freaky, the character on the far upper left looks like my son today, I did a spit take. Is that character, second, lower right, my Judge Turpin ?

      Thanks all for such a great tribute to this fine actor who’s name I’m not familiar with. I am now and look forward to visiting his work.

      • votermom says:

        The one on the top left is Hans Gruber, the bad guy in Die Hard.
        Not sure about the one next to it but I think it’s Truly Madly Deeply.
        3rd from left top row is Sheriff Nottingham opposite Costner’ s Robin Hood.

        • leslie says:

          I ought to have said – yes. That second character Top left is Jamie from “Truly, Madly, Deeply”. I’ve never seen the Kevin Costner “Robin Hood”. It’s time I changed that. I honestly have never reacted in this way to the loss of an actor. It’s almost embarrassing.

          • votermom says:

            Robin Hood is not that great, except for Alan Rickman stealing the show.
            But if you like Mel Brooks, after Kevin Costner’ s Robin Hood, you should watch Robin Hood: Men in Tights where they mercilessly satirize it.

          • leslie says:

            Thanks. I love Mel Brooks (and I loved Anne Bancroft as well). His Robin Hood is another movie on my list.

          • Jadzia says:

            I know. I have seen so many comments (including from people I actually know IRL) from people saying that they had NEVER cried about a celebrity death before yesterday. Alan Rickman always seemed to me to have this deep, but transparent sadness, which is what made him so special to me.

      • votermom says:

        The bottom row, not sure about the leftmost, the next is Galaxy Quest, I think the 3rd is Todd Sweeney, and the last is Harry Potter.

  5. Myiq2xu says:

    We missed out on some of his best work because it was only seen in England. I liked him best in Die Hard and Galaxyquest. He nailed the part of Snape too.

  6. Myiq2xu says:

    I’m gonna post this here cuz it’s the newest thread:

  7. Myiq2xu says:

  8. Myiq2xu says:

    • DeniseVB says:

      To Bernie freakin’ Sanders ! I see Bloomberg is getting ready to jump in as a third party candidate, Jim Webb is still teasing with those thoughts. I heard a sound bite on Rush from Bob Schaeffer (?), an ole’ lib journo, asking what the hell has happened to the Democratic Party? Where are the candidates? And he couldn’t believe Hillary and Sanders was the best they could come up with. Always nice to hear what we’re always talking about😉

  9. Myiq2xu says:


    The Islamic State attack in Jakarta earlier today is part of the same campaign as the Paris attack last November. While the Jakarta attack was no where near as successful in terms of casualties, including those killed, the objectives of the attack was the same as of last November’s in Paris. Islamic State has two objectives for their attacks – both related. The first is to attack the Gray Zone; the social and civil space** that Muslims live in. It is an attempt to force Muslims, whether in the US or Britain or France or Indonesia or Jordan or anywhere else, to chose sides. To define themselves not only as Muslims, but as Muslim in such a way that sets them apart from their fellow citizens. It is both a figurative and literal attempt to collapse the public realm/sphere into the private one. The Islamic State hopes that by doing so they can then achieve their objectives of recruiting Muslims to relocate to the Caliphate – the only place where actual Islam is being practiced or to stay in place and use their local knowledge to attack targets that further weaken the Gray Zone. So the first objective is to set the conditions for recruiting by attacking the Gray Zone.

    The second of the Islamic State’s objective with the Jakarta attack, just as it was with the Paris attack last November, is to get the US, its allies and its partners to provide the ways and means that the Islamic State does not have to achieve IS’s ends. This is terrorism as Psychological Operations (PSYOPS). While Indonesia still has its socio-political problems, they’ve come a long way from the Suharto and Sukarno regimes. This is summed up in what has become the Indonesian national motto: bhinneka tunggal ika, which means unity in diversity. The attacks earlier today are intended to shatter, if not reverse, Indonesia’s attempts to achieve unity in diversity. IS hopes that the Indonesian response, a crackdown on Muslim Indonesians, will destroy the Gray Zone, providing the Islamic State with new recruits and a justification for further attacks, which will then lead to greater crackdowns, as well as the imposition of security protocols that erode the Indonesian political, social, and economic reforms of the past eighteen years. Moreover, they hope that attacks in Indonesia will lead other states and societies to react out of fear and panic, eroding their Gray Zones and putting a truth to the lie that ideals of liberty and freedom and diversity are just a facade. The Islamic State cannot achieve these ends themselves. They are hoping we will be so scared as to do it for them.

    That’s not so bad, but I disagree with the conclusion.

    Here’s where he goes off the rails:

    The Gray Zone is not just the social and civil public space in which Muslims live. Everyone lives in it when not in private. We can see it under attack by Ammon Bundy and his followers in Harney County, Oregon among white, Christian Americans just as it is under attack in Paris and Jakarta and other places by the Islamic State.

    Yeah, except Ammon Bundy and his WCA crew haven’t killed anyone.

  10. Karen Miller says:

    Triple damn about Rickman. He was a superstar.

  11. Myiq2xu says:

  12. Myiq2xu says:

    John Cole is horrified:

    This is the most disturbing thing I have ever seen, and it may also double as the whitest thing I have ever seen:

    This is whiter than the Oscar nominees.

    The only thing that I can think of that might be whiter than this is two klan members having a gunfight over a mayonnaise sandwich in the back of a pick-up truck in an Alabama Wal-Mart on Columbus day.

    How soon they forget:

  13. Myiq2xu says:

    The Hill:

    Making her first solo appearance on the stump, Chelsea Clinton late Tuesday ripped Sanders over his proposals on healthcare and college affordability, arguing the White House hopeful wants to “dismantle” ObamaCare and Medicare.
    Democrats have almost universally panned the attack, believing it to be ineffective and a misuse of her talents.

    They note that Chelsea Clinton has mostly been used to highlight Hillary Clinton’s softer side as a mother and grandmother and say she seemed uncomfortable shedding her first daughter persona for the role of attack dog.

    “The thing that tells you as much as anything about [the Clinton campaign’s] current state of mind is Chelsea going on the attack. It tells you everything you need to know,” said one Democratic strategist. “That this [challenge from Sanders] is real and they’ve got to be freaking out.”

    The attack caught many Democrats, including Sanders and his supporters, by surprise.

    I guess she figures that kids are off limits.

  14. Dora says:

    Scarborough on Trump Pensacola Rally: ‘I Never Saw Anything Like That in My Hometown Before’ ­ ‘I Don’t Get It’

    • 1539days says:

      As someone from New York State, I’m pretty tired of NYC being noble victims of Islamic terror. This state, driven by majority Democrats in NYC and Albany, have consistently chosen socialists like DeBlasio and Barack Obama. Obama is dedicated to capitulating on Muslim rights. Deblasio wants to take most of the tools the police use to fight terror, and crime for that matter.

      The Republicans haven’t won New York in a presidential election in over 30 years. They won’t win it with Ted Cruz running and they probably won’t win it with Trump, either. The good news is that New York has 7 fewer electoral votes than it did in 1988 and it has less of an impact.

      So Ted Cruz went to Harvard. George W. Bush did, too. Bush embraced Texas values and so does Cruz. Bush won two elections for president and didn’t win New York either time.

  15. Myiq2xu says:

  16. Myiq2xu says:

    I❤ Ace

    • leslie says:

      Is this the same guy who liked the crease in bronco’s pants? If so, maybe he should check out some pant legs before he says anything else. 👿

  17. blowme0bama says:

    Okay, how do I “like” a comment that isn’t in response to one that I’ve posted?

  18. Myiq2xu says:

  19. Myiq2xu says:

  20. taw46 says:

    One of those evil 1%’s.

  21. taw46 says:

  22. Dora says:

  23. taw46 says:

    Over 680,000 immigrants from Muslim-majority nations in last 5 years.

      • mothy67, says:

        You can see the back of her head in the second photo. . Very small school but they take science very seriously. Less than 70 in four classes. Tonight the math teacher held a class for parents only 9 attended. Go figure the parents of kids with good grades. Funny she told the reporter she wants to go to Purdue.

        • leslie says:

          If she wants to become a veterinarian, don’t forget Uof IL in Urbana Champaign. Uof IL has a great school of veterinary medicine. They are also recognized as a top engineering school. My 1st dtr earned a BS from the college of engineering there. There are always hundreds and hundreds of applicants to that college. My dtr did not apply, she was recruited by them – a very big honor. //bragging over

  24. Myiq2xu says:

    I tried to watch the #GOPDebate but I just couldn’t do it.

    • votermom says:

      I can’t watch – we don’t get that channel.

    • leslie says:

      After I saw Cruz and Trump go after each other (on the BC issue) I turned it off. In fact, that was the only thing I saw on the debate. Instead I watched “Truly, Madly, Deeply” and then the first 2 episodes of “Barchester Chronicles”. A much better way to spend the night.
      And once again I owe taw46 thanks for finding the entire movie on YouTube.

      • taw46 says:

        I liked the movie so much, I will watch it again!

        • leslie says:

          If you have Netflix, watch “Blow Dry”. I saw it a year or so ago and loved it. It is a comedy of sorts and I only watched it because Rickman was in it. The synopsis of the movie didn’t attract me – just Alan Rickman. But it is sweet and funny and worthwhile. Let me know what you thought of it. Also, I watched “Bottle Shock” last night. It was also a fun movie. I think it was based on a true story.

  25. Venus says:


  26. Venus says:

    Trump just schlonged Cruz with that “New York values” answer.

  27. Venus says:


  28. Venus says:


  29. Venus says:


    *yes, I’m typing in caps so those idiots can hear me.

  30. mothy67, says:

    I’m watching the first Potter film. What fun Alan Rickman and Maggie Smith must have had playing those roles.

  31. Venus says:


    NEW YORK TIMES reporters revolting on Twitter. Apparently they received marching orders pre-debate:

    Attack Trump.

    @hellarNYT · 14m14 minutes ago
    Misunderstood job description. Was hired to bring own voice to NYT, instead forced to focus on Trump tonight

    @Nick_FoxNYT · 56m56 minutes ago
    First debate hasn’t even started yet and I have already been instructed on narrative by NYT

    @GinniaNYT · 27m27 minutes ago
    I can write my column tonight with my arms folded. It’s already been dictated: Attack Trump

    @JameStewartNYT · 2h2 hours ago
    Shameful memo received by all staff covering tonight’s #Debate. Bullseye on frontrunner! #GOP

  32. Venus says:

    Cruz actually came off badly during the debate — he lost to Trump on the NY Values — and yes, I know Cruz wasn’t talking about 9/11 response, he was talking about liberal NYC views *but* being devisive isn’t a smart play — you can’t just win *only* red states to get to the White House.

    Trump seems to be taking a page out of Bill Clinton’s 1992 playbook — he’ll take on his own party to clear himself a path to the White House.
    And it looks like it’s working.

    • Venus says:

      Also Cruz came off badly in his exchange with Rubio’s laundry list that he tried to characterize as “oppo research” and Rubio replied “it’s your record.”

      • taw46 says:

        Made Cruz look like any other politician, not principled fighter for the Constitution. Don’t know what happened to Cruz tonight.

    • taw46 says:

      I agree about Cruz, and this from someone who always liked him. Bad move on the NY values. I also thought he screwed up the “birther” question, by trying to drag Trump into it, because Trump’s mother wasn’t born in US. Just stupid.

      To me, Trump had his strongest debate tonight.

  33. 1539days says:

    I think Rand Paul was the winner of the debate.

  34. Dora says:

    Cruz should never have taken on New York!

  35. Dora says:

  36. DeniseVB says:

    DeRay sighting !

  37. Somebody says:

    Interesting questions regarding Trump’s positions. A level headed article that refrains from bashing, simply asks some pertinent questions.

  38. votermom says:

    New open thread

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