11 Comments

In Memoriam

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Photo by Gretchen E.K. Engel

I’m not the type of person to be greatly affected by a celebrity’s passing, but Alan Rickman’s death last week was one of them. Last year it was the death of Jonathan Crombie from the Anne of Green Gables movies. Kristen even quoted me in her post as to why.
Alan Rickman is one of my favorite actors. I’ve seen him play villains in Die Hard and Robin Hood Prince of Thieves and the gallant Colonel Brandon in Sense and Sensibility, which I loved more when I watched it a second time knowing he was the one playing that role.But he will forever be Professor Snape, one of my favorite characters in the Harry Potter series. I called it in The Sorcerer’s Stone that Professor Snape was deep down a good guy. I used Snape’s pen sieve memories as an object lesson to my son to remind him how to treat people when he was being cocky about his academic and athletic skills. Seeing James Potter and Sirius Black bully Severus Snape breaks my heart. Every time. At the end of The Half-Blood Prince I felt the sting of betrayal. But in the end, Snape is a hero from the beginning. Because of unrequited love.

Alan Rickman brought to the screen the depth and complexity needed for the enigmatic Severus Snape. And for that he will remain one of my favorite actors. Always.

What role do you think of when you hear Alan Rickman’s name?

What famous person’s death most effected you and why?

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About Gretchen E K Engel

Chemical engineer by day, spec fiction writer by night

11 comments on “In Memoriam

  1. Have you read about Rowling telling Rickman “what lies behind the word ‘always'” back when he was acting in the first film? No wonder he portrayed the character so well. I think of Snape first, then Hitchhiker’s Guide and Sense & Sensibility (that movie cracked me up – a bizarre HP reunion with a touch of House thrown in).

    Jonathan Brandis’ death deeply affected me. I had read some news article about him about a year prior to his death and felt the Lord strongly lay on my heart to pray for him and write him about it. Well, I did the praying but felt awkward and never wrote the letter. (I wasn’t some giddy teenage fan so writing a letter felt silly and I justified my disobedience that way.) And then he took his life and I’ll never know how God might have used that letter. And while I know God has forgiven me, it took a long time for my to forgive myself. Lesson learned.

  2. Rickman was definitely one of my favorite actors. It was such a complete shock to hear that he’d passed. I think Quigley Down Under was the first movie I’d ever seen him in. My siblings and I are watching the Harry Potter series this week. 🙂

  3. As you note, it’s impossible to think of ONE role when I think of Alan Rickman. The thing that impressed me most was his incredible range. heroes, villains, romance, comedy … he did it all exceptionally well.

  4. I always thought of Dr.Lazarus of the dry, speaking aliens of Galaxy Quest when remembering Alan Rickman. He kept complaining that he was trained as a serious actor, but he showed his true character as one of the aliens lay dying and looked to Rickman.

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