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Alan Rickman’s Diary Reveals What He Really Thought Of His ‘Harry Potter’ Co-Stars

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Alan Rickman, who passed away in 2016 due to pancreatic cancer, is famous for his portrayal of Severus Snape in the Harry Potter franchise. Now, we are able to gain some insight into his thoughts about the films, his character, and his co-stars. Rickman kept many diaries, and now they are being published in the upcoming book Madly, Deeply: The Alan Rickman Diaries.

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The Guardian has published some of the entires, showing us how Rickman felt about Harry Potter, J.K. Rowling, and watching his co-stars grow up over the 11 years he worked on the films.

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“Talk to Joanne Rowling again and she nervously lets me in on a few glimpses of Snape’s background. Talking to her is talking to someone who lives these stories, not invents them. She’s a channel – bubbling over with, ‘Well, when he was young, you see, this, that and the other happened’ – never, ‘I wanted so & so…'” he writes about Rowling.

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Of the Harry Potter premiere, he wrote: “6.30pm The film should only be seen on a big screen. It acquires a scale and depth that matches the hideous score by John Williams. Party afterwards at the Savoy is much more fun.”

Of Daniel Radcliffe in 2003: “He’s so concentrated now. Serious and focused – but with a sense of fun. I still don’t think he’s really an actor but he will undoubtedly direct/produce. And he has such quiet, dignified support from his parents. Nothing is pushed.”

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And later: “One minute he was 12 now he’s 19. When did that happen? And he’s sensitive, articulate & smart.”

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Of the kids in the film in 2003: “The day got off to a fabulous start with the screen guillotining on to my head, a sudden, swift blackout followed by day-long melancholy. Alfonso [Cuarón, director] was quietly ballistic with me. I love him too much to let it last too long so I wailed offset and we sorted it out. He’s under the usual HP pressure and even he starts rehearsing cameras before actors, and these kids need directing. They don’t know their lines and Emma [Watson]’s diction is this side of Albania at times. Plus my so-called rehearsal is with a stand-in who is French.”

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On his own transformation into Snape: “I realise as soon as that [Snape’s] ring and costume go on – something happens. It becomes alien to be chatty, smiley, open. The character narrows me down, tightens me up. Not good qualities on a film set. I have never been less communicative with a crew. Fortunately, Dan [Radcliffe] fills that role with ease and charm. And youth.”

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And on learning more of Snape’s background after reading the last book: “… I have finished reading the last Harry Potter book. Snape dies heroically, Potter describes him to his children as one of the bravest men he ever knew and calls his son Albus Severus. This was a genuine rite of passage. One small piece of information from Jo Rowling seven years ago – Snape loved Lily – gave me a cliff edge to hang on to.”