We are all still trying to come to grips with the shock of losing Alan Rickman, a wonderful and beloved performer that, by all accounts from those that knew him best, was an equally wonderful and beloved person. Saying goodbye is never easy, and mourning a celebrity we’ve never actually met, but who has meant so much to us, can be difficult. That’s why these small tributes and public farewells can help in that process, a fact Rickman himself understood.
The man who played Severus Snape publicly said goodbye to the Potions Professor after eight Harry Potter films in a letter to Empire Magazine back in 2011. His eloquence and kindness is on display in the tender and sincere letter, where he talks about his appreciation for being a part of the franchise and its youngest actors.
“I have just returned from the dubbing studio where I spoke into a microphone as Severus Snape for absolutely the last time. On the screen were some flashback shots of Daniel, Emma, and Rupert from ten years ago. They were 12. I have also recently returned from New York, and while I was there, I saw Daniel singing and dancing (brilliantly) on Broadway. A lifetime seems to have passed in minutes.
Three children have become adults since a phone call with Jo Rowling, containing one small clue, persuaded me that there was more to Snape than an unchanging costume, and that even though only three of the books were out at that time, she held the entire massive but delicate narrative in the surest of hands.
It is an ancient need to be told in stories. But the story needs a great storyteller. Thanks for all of it, Jo.
The great story still needed a great actor. We were lucky they found the perfect one. The original plan, as the story goes, was for Tim Roth to play Snape, however things didn’t work out that way. Now, can you even imagine the role played by anyone but Mr. Rickman? And what if that phone call with J.K. Rowling had gone differently? Maybe she didn’t share that one tantalizing detail that made him reconsider? It’s a crazy thing to think about, and one we’re glad didn’t happen.
Goodbye Professor. And thank you.
Please share your favorite Alan Rickman memories with us in the comments below.
Featured Image: Warner Brothers
Letter: Empire Magazine