16 Interesting Things You Never Knew About Alan Rickman

Alan Rickman, we miss you. Here’s a list of facts to commemorate your greatness.

1. The main reason that he decided to become an actor was the movie Nashville

Rickman said that seeing this movie changed his life and ultimately prompted him to become an actor.


2. There’s an important reason that Alan Rickman didn’t have any kids

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Source: MStars News

He had previously admitted that he would have liked to become a family man, but decided not to because his wife didn’t want to. So he put his dreams aside to respect her wishes.

3. He had a  love of birds

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Source: Giphy

While being interviewed by astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson on StarTalk in 2012, Alan said that he loved our feathered friends and that they were fascinating to him.

4. He was a godfather to another actor

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Source: Collider

British actor Tom Burke was Alan Rickman’s godson – you’ll know his face from the movie Only God Forgives, in which he co-starred with Ryan Gosling.

5. Rickman was extremely charitable

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Source: Giphy

Rickman was patron of the charity Saving Faces as well as the honorary president of the International Performer’s Aid Trust.

6. He was an graphic design student before he became an actor

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Source: Giphy

Rickman studied graphic design at Chelsea College of Art and Design, and the Royal College of Art. He created a graphic design company with his friends as a result, called Graphiti – which was very successful. It was only after three years of this that he decided to call it quits and pursue his professional acting career.

7. He failed his California driving test the first time around 

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Source: Giphy

For “driving too cautiously through a green light.”

8. He was literally dropped from twenty foot in the movie Die Hard

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Source: 1stslice.com

In the scene where Hans Gruber is falling from the top of the building, a stuntman dropped the actor from twenty foot, where he landed on an air bag. The shocked look on his face was made even more authentic by the fact that the stuntman said that he would drop him on the count of three, but chose to drop him on two instead.

9. He was friends with the former governor general of Canada

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Source: Giphy

Alan Rickman and Adrienne Clarkson got along very well. He even went as far to say that Canada was like his “second home.”

10. Richard Curtis wanted Alan Rickman to play Charles in Four Weddings and a Funeral

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Source: Giphy

In fact, director Curtis was so reluctant to cast Hugh Grant because he was so desperate to have Alan play the role. Luckily for Hugh, he eventually landed the part and began his journey to stardom from there.

11. He knew that Severus Snape would die in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows before it was even released

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Source: Giphy

None of the other cast members for the movies knew – it was just that JK Rowling couldn’t bear to keep any secrets from Rickman.

12. He had, in part, a ‘perfect male voice’

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Source: Screen Crush

According to a research study by linguist Andrew Linn and sound engineer Shannon Harris of Sheffield University in 2008, the ‘perfect male voice’ is a mix between Alan Rickman’s and Jeremy Irons’s. They based this on a sample of 50 voices.

13. He wasn’t the first in line to play Severus Snape in Harry Potter 

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Source: Giphy

JK Rowling envisioned Alan Rickman playing the part when she was writing the books, but the studio favourite was actually Tim Roth, who said no to the role and decided to work on Planet of the Apes instead.

14. He often turned down popular film roles

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Source: Pinterest

Rickman called theatre his “first love” and would favour being on the stage to in front of a camera. Above, he starred in Hamlet at the Riverside theatre in Nottingham, 1992.

15. For his role in Truly Madly Deeply, Rickman took cello lessons

In the final cut, the bowing hand is his, but the left hand is that of a cellist who was stood behind him and had pushed his arm under the actor’s armpit.

16. His wife, Rima Horton, had also been his teenage sweetheart

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Source: Daily Mail

They had been together since 1965. They were an item for an incredible 47 years before they decided to tie the knot in 2012 – in secret.

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