Hammersmith, London, England
Claim to Fame
Die Hard, Harry Potter
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Profile Bio Text
Alan Sidney Patrick Rickman (21 February 1946 – 14 January 2016) was an English actor and director, known for playing a variety of roles on stage and screen, often as a complex antagonist. Rickman was a member of the Royal Shakespeare Company performing in both modern and classical theatre productions. His first major television role came in 1982, but his big break was his role as the Vicomte de Valmont in the stage production of Les Liaisons Dangereuses in 1985, for which he was nominated for a Tony Award. Rickman gained wider notice for his film performances as Hans Gruber in Die Hard and Severus Snape in the Harry Potter film series.
Rickman's other film roles included the Sheriff of Nottingham in Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves, Jamie in Truly, Madly, Deeply, Colonel Brandon in Ang Lee's Sense and Sensibility, Harry in Love Actually, P.L. O'Hara in An Awfully Big Adventure, Alexander Dane in Galaxy Quest, and Judge Turpin in the film adaptation of Stephen Sondheim's musical of Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street.
In 1995, Rickman was awarded a Golden Globe Award, an Emmy Award and a Screen Actors Guild Award for his portrayal of Rasputin in Rasputin: Dark Servant of Destiny. He won a BAFTA Award for his role in Robin Hood.
Rickman died of cancer on 14 January 2016 at the age of 69.
Rickman was born in Acton, London, to a working class family, the son of Margaret Doreen Rose (née Bartlett), a housewife, and Bernard Rickman, a factory worker. His ancestry was English, Irish and Welsh; his father was Catholic and his mother a Methodist. His family included an older brother, David (b. 1944), a graphic designer, a younger brother, Michael (b. 1947), a tennis coach, and a younger sister, Sheila (b. 1950). Rickman attended Derwentwater Primary School, in Acton, a school that followed the Montessori method of education.
When he was eight, Rickman's father died, leaving his mother to raise him and his three siblings mostly alone. She married again, but divorced his stepfather after three years. "There was one love in her life", Rickman later said of her. He excelled at calligraphy and watercolour painting. From Derwentwater Junior School he won a scholarship to Latymer Upper School in London, where he became involved in drama. After leaving Latymer, he attended Chelsea College of Art and Design and then the Royal College of Art. This education allowed him to work as a graphic designer for the radical newspaper the Notting Hill Herald, which he considered a more stable occupation than acting. "Drama school wasn't considered the sensible thing to do at 18", he said.
After graduation, Rickman and several friends opened a graphic design studio called Graphiti, but after three years of successful business, he decided that if he was going to pursue acting professionally, it was now or never. He wrote to the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (RADA) requesting an audition and was awarded a place at RADA, which he attended from 1972-74. While there, he studied Shakespeare and supported himself by working as a dresser for Nigel Hawthorne and Sir Ralph Richardson. He left after winning several prizes, including the Emile Littler Prize, the Forbes Robertson Prize and the Bancroft Gold Medal.
In 1965, at the age of 19, Rickman met 18-year-old Rima Horton, who became his first girlfriend and would later be a Labour Party councillor on the Kensington and Chelsea London Borough Council (1986–2006) and an economics lecturer at the nearby Kingston University. They lived together from 1977 until his death. In 2015, Rickman confirmed that they had married in a private ceremony in New York City in 2012.
He was an active patron of the charity Saving Faces and honorary president of the International Performers' Aid Trust, a charity that alleviates poverty in some of the world's toughest conditions. When discussing politics, Rickman said he "was born a card-carrying member of the Labour Party".
Rickman was the godfather of fellow actor Tom Burke.
Rickman died of cancer on January 14, 2016, at age 69. A statement released to BBC News said Rickman "was surrounded by family and friends".
Tributes from Rickman's co-stars and contemporaries hit social media within minutes of the announcement. Harry Potter creator J.K. Rowling called Rickman "a magnificent actor and a wonderful man". Emma Watson wrote, "I feel so lucky to have worked and spent time with such a special man and actor. I'll really miss our conversations". Daniel Radcliffe appreciated his loyalty and support. "I'm pretty sure he came and saw everything I ever did on stage both in London and New York. He didn't have to do that".
Actress Emma Thompson remembered "the intransigence which made him the great artist he was—his ineffable and cynical wit, the clarity with which he saw most things, including me ... I learned a lot from him". Sir Ian McKellen wrote, "behind [Rickman's] mournful face, which was just as beautiful when wracked with mirth, there was a super-active spirit, questing and achieving, a super-hero, unassuming but deadly effective".
Couple Profile Source
Latymer School, London (1964)
Chelsea College of Art and Design (1967), Royal Academy of Dramatic Art, London
Full Name at Birth
Alan Sidney Patrick Rickman
Alan Sidney Patrick Rickman (21 February 1946 – 14 January 2016) was an English actor and director.
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Music Profile Complete
Incredibly deep voice
Talent Agency (e.g. Modelling)
Independent Talent Group Ltd., ICM Partners
Place of Death
London, United Kingdom
Cause of Death
Couple Profile Source
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