Another brilliant Brit has passed. Alan Rickman has died in London. His death was confirmed on Thursday by his family who said that he died “surrounded by family and friends”. He had been suffering from cancer.
Rickman found a new legion of young fans as Professor Snape in the Harry Potter films, but the actor had been a big-screen staple since first shooting to global acclaim in 1988, when he starred as Hans Gruber, Bruce Willis’s snarky adversary in Die Hard – a part he was offered two days after arriving in L.A. at age 41.
But Rickman’s work on stage really established him as a solid talent. After graduating from Rada, the actor supported himself as a dresser for Nigel Hawthorne and Sir Ralph Richardson before finding work with the Royal Shakespeare Company. Another key stage performance was as Mark Antony opposite Helen Mirren’s Cleopatra at the Olivier Theatre in London.
Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling tweeted her respects for Rickman.
Rickman and his wife, Rima Horton, met when they were still teenagers; she became an economics lecturer as well as a Labour party councillor. In 2012, the pair married, having been together since 1965. Alan Rickman was 69.
(via The Guardian)