Actor Alan Rickman passed away from pancreatic cancer in January 2016, leaving the worlds of theatre and film in mourning (via The Independent). Many people remember Alan Rickman best as the calculating and chilly Severus Snape from the "Harry Potter" films, although he had a long list of outstanding parts throughout his career.
Despite the acclaim he received for his performance as the Potions Master, Alan Rickman almost passed on the part because he didn't want his filmography to be associated with bad guys after his turns as Hans Gruber and the Sheriff of Nottingham in "Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves" (via The A.V. Club). The late star even tried to leave the show before he passed away.
Rickman began keeping a comprehensive diary of his life as an actor in 1992; the resulting book was titled "Madly, Deeply: The Alan Rickman Diaries." The BAFTA-winning actor reportedly wanted to quit the series before production even began on the third film, "Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban," according to excerpts from his diary released to The Guardian. At the end of the fifth film, "Despite his apprehensions about "Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix," he ultimately determined that he wanted to conclude the series, suggesting that "The argument that wins is the one that says: 'See it through.'" This is your narrative."
Even while it appears that Rickman has resolved to see the job through to its conclusion, he will face challenges along the way. During production of "Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince," the beloved actor wrote in his diary that he did not approve of the film's climax.
Tom Felton plays the villain Draco Malfoy, who challenges Albus "Dumbledore" (Michael Gambon). Malfoy, terrified, admits tearfully that he must kill Dumbledore or perish. Harry Potter (Daniel Radcliffe) peeks through the cracks from below, waiting for the right time to cast a curse. Unable to make a decision, Malfoy is greeted by Snape's stern "No." Snape is having an inner struggle as Dumbledore tries to convince him to change in silence. Snape finishes off the headmaster of Hogwarts with an incantation.
The death of Dumbledore was criticised by Alan Rickman, who wrote, "The scene seems oddly lacking in drama - on the page, but that is absolute cause and effect of screenplays that have to conflate (deflate) the narrative." Rickman believed this was because of changes made to the scene from the book to the script. Furthermore, Rickman complained that the characters' intentions weren't made clear, arguing that the audience wouldn't remember any of that information and, thus, it wouldn't matter.
Snape maintains a resolute silence throughout, but Rickman says he fought to get one extra word cut from the screenplay because he didn't understand it. Rickman recalled that his request was granted, saying, "To wit, I argue (successfully, today) that a line of Snape's, 'I gave my word. I made a promise,' was confused and diluted."
Despite his complaints about the films, Alan Rickman was pleased with how things turned out for Snape (via Variety). "I have now read all eight "Harry Potter" novels. After Snape's courageous death, Potter told his kids that Snape was one of the bravest men he'd ever known and gave his son the middle name Albus Severus "His 2007 work is cited. "The event truly served as a rite of passage. Seven years ago, when I learned that Snape had feelings for Lily, I felt like I had reached the edge of a precipice."