This is how I learned of Alan Rickman’s passing: I checked Facebook while eating breakfast, and immediately saw that my sister had written, “First David Bowie, and now Alan Rickman?… Please tell me that this is a hoax.”
“Not him,” I thought. “Maybe it actually is a hoax?” I didn’t have to scroll far to see that it wasn’t. When my husband came into the room, I didn’t have words, so I just pointed at the headline. He paused a moment and said, “I guess we’ll never have another Galaxy Quest.” Not that anyone really expected a sequel, but the point is, Rickman can’t be replaced. No one else has that distinctive, resonant voice. No one else has those perfect facial expressions.
Daniel Radcliffe, who starred with him in the Harry Potter movies, described him as “kind, generous, self-deprecating and funny.” He must have been a wonderful person, but he excelled at playing characters with a flair for being arch, put-upon or dour, i.e. the perfect voice for Marvin in the 2005 film adaptation of The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. When you need a robot with a brain the size of a planet, who’s constantly depressed (and not afraid to let everyone know it), who better to turn to than Alan Rickman?
Below is a list I’ve compiled of times Rickman played a supporting role and still managed to steal the show—every single time.
Remember when he called off Christmas? Remember when he refused to say that stupid line one more time, but then said it anyway (of course)? Remember when he revealed the truth about his past to Harry?
What are we going to do without him? I guess we’ll have to obsessively watch his movies over and over. Here are a few to get you started, if you want to join me. There are plenty more, so feel free to mention your favorites in the comments.
- Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves
- Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street
- Sense and Sensibility
- Die Hard
- Galaxy Quest
- The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy
- All the Harry Potter movies
Farewell, Mr. Rickman. There’s only one thing left for me to say: By Grabthar’s hammer, you shall be avenged.