Alan Rickman Talks Snape


Dec 30, 2011

Posted by Mel

In a new interview with the LA Times Hero Complex, Alan Rickman discusses what it was like to play Professor Severus Snape over a decade:

“It was a punctuation mark in my life every year because I would be
doing other things but always come back to that and I was always aware
of my place in the story even as others around me were not’ Rickman
said. “Am I sad? The point about a great story is that it’s got a
beginning, a middle and end. The ending of this story was quite popular
and beautifully judged by Jo Rowling and David Yates, so it’s not a
cause for sadness; it’s a cause for celebration that it was rounded off
so well.”

Rickman also expresses his admiration for J. K. Rowling, for knowing how the story was going to end so many years in advance:

“It’s completely staggering that she had all of that in her head’
Rickman said. “Rumor has it that she put the ending in a bank vault when
she was writing the beginning. So she held it all in her head, all
seven books. It’s jaw-dropping, really. When we started she had only
written three of the books so it was like trying to walk down two
potential roads not at all knowing what the end would be but having some
sense of what that man’s life was’ Rickman said. “I knew with Snape I
was working as a double agent, as it turns out, and a very good one at

Director David Yates and producer David Heyman also weigh in on Rickman’s portrayal of Snape, and there is some discussion of Rickman’s other acting roles further on in the article.

Many thanks to Hagiographer13 for sending this in!

26 Responses to Alan Rickman Talks Snape

Avatar ImageWeenyOwl says: As wonderful as Alan Rickman was as Snape, it seems to me rather foolish to make the claim, 'When (in) years to come people reflect on Rickman’s career, Snape will likely be considered the ace card and the eight “Potter” movies his winning hand.' He is only 65, classically trained and has many roles yet to come, and I expect that some will be much more 'heavyweight.'Avatar Imageamelia 1-2-3- says: loved it! alan rickman is amazing!!Avatar ImageLunaLuver says: Alan Rickman was, is and always will be the best of all the HP actors. He was so lucky to know what would happen to his character in the end, looking back you can see how that truely helped him to make Snape just perfect in ever way. And it is amazing how JKR was about to keep it all in her head like that from beginning to end! The best author of our day!Avatar Imageforgetmenot_007 says: It's absolutely staggering that JKR had it all in her head! Yes,no doubt Alan Rickman played a perfect Severus Snape,having known his character inside out. He's truly an amazing actor!Avatar ImageHagiographer13 says: As a huge Alan Rickman fan. I was thrilled to find this awesome article and pass it along. We have waited SO LONG for AR to speak out on Snape -- and this is a marvelous interview! Personally I find his portrayal of Snape as nuanced and fine a performance as I have seen in any film this year. It will be a shame that he won't get the recognition he so richly deserves. Long before DH revealed the true man behind the Death Eater mask, Rickman was able to convey SOMETHING behind the silky voice and glower that said there was far more to Snape than met the eye. That is true acting. Well done!Avatar ImageMiss.Weasley says: Well all the comments above practically said it all! Alan is a brilliant actor, nobody could fit into Severus' shoes better than him, we love and thank you. Staggering? Jaw-dropping? There are no words to describe Jo's brilliance. Nothing she does can surprise me anymore, because she's simply J.K. Rowling <3Avatar Imagelovelle says: So cool! He is so humble and great! I mean, it's so nice of him to praise JK like that! and even David Yates! amazing person indeed!Avatar ImageFleur-de- Lily says: The interview from Alan Rickman is so cool I think by the LA Times!Avatar Imagemoglet says: @WeenyOwl I agree with you, it's rather a surprising statement, given the quality of some of the work he's already done prior to Harry Potter, and the fact that he's done plenty of theatre too. He was already a well known actor after all, and, for instance, his portrayal of Colonel Brandon in Sense and Sensibility was a wonderful performance, and I can think of others. His role as Snape was pivotal to the Harry Potter story, but there was not a lot of screen time in the course of the eight films.Avatar Imagechikitcorpuzvesterbaek says: I think his playing Snape endeared him to generations that would not otherwise appreciate all the other films he's done before Harry Potter. On another note, I think he enjoyed playing Snape - and knowing from the beginning how pivotal his role is to the story of Harry Potter.Avatar ImageMad But Happy says: I couldn't imagine anyone but him in the roll; he was perfect!Avatar Imagewandmastercalum says: I love Alan Rickman. He not only played Snape really well but he understood the character too. Really amazing interview. Avatar Imagezaucwrkexun says: I couldn't image any one other than Alan Rickman playing Snape- he was perfect for the role.Avatar ImageHarryLoverAllRound says: Being a huge Alan Rickman fan, I have to say, that Alan Rickman is one of the greatest actors that was ever cast into the Harry Potter Movies. I think that his claim on "the whole point of a good story is that it has a beginning a middle and an end." Is very true. That is why the ending of the whole movie and book series was so bittersweet. Because you can't have another one. Alan Rickman was so right on that. I can't believe that JO Rowling had the whole story in her head, that is the mark of an amazing writer. Alan Rickman had the part down pat. He is the one and only person to play Severus Snape Avatar Image1HarryPotterFan123 says: All the comments above this one sum everything I was thinking up perfectly! Alan is honestly THE BEST Snape we could have ever hoped for. Thank you Alan! Also, really enjoyed the interview :)Avatar ImageWON_TWO says: Absolutely brill... Avatar Imagemolly43 says: I've seen Alan Rickman in other movies before HP and he was great in those also. He's a great actor. Avatar Imagealynnrand says: Is it too late to marry him? Lol I love Alan Rickman! He was the best person to play Snape! SO glad he enjoyed it as well...Avatar Imagebellahawthorne says: It really is staggering, and I'm amazed that JK Rowling had so much of the book laid out before she completed the later novels. Rickman did an incredible job - I'm amazed in every movie by his performance. Thanks for sharing the interview! :DAvatar ImageGinnyWeasley777 says: Alan Rickman was amazing as snape I just realized how much he looks like Chuck NorrisAvatar ImageXyra44 says: Prof Snape was always one of my favorite charcters - I couldn't pin him down, but was sure there was more to him than what Harry was seeing. Alan Rickman was a perfect choice; the roles I first saw him in were almost all evil then he was a sympathetic, romantic lead in Sense & Senisbility... When we finally got to see all of Severus everything in he did in the previous books just took on new light. JKR is brilliant in her character development and Alan was billiant in bringing him to life/the screen.Avatar ImageCloakKnight says: I'm still in awe at how perfectly he embodied the role! He's an astounding actor all aroundAvatar Imagekyrstalkris says: An amazing interview, thanks MyLeaky! I agree, I'm quite as astonished as Alan that Jo had so much planned out!Avatar Imagehewy says: Well, everyone else has summed it up quite nicely for me! Alan is truly a genius of and actor and the consumate Snape! Bravo!!!!Avatar ImageDrarryLover says: Alan Rickman was perfect for the role of Snape, I really can not think of anyone else who could have done the job. He is an amazing actor, and every time I read the books, it's Alan Rickman I see in my mind.Avatar ImageNarcissatrix says: I read this awesome interview a few days ago, while looking up some information about Alan's play on Broadway (which I plan on seeing this year!) What beautiful, insightful, thoroughly delightful thoughts from one of the greatest actors whose works I've ever had the privilege of watching. "The perfect Snape" would be putting it mildly--thank you, indeed, Mr. Rickman, for drawing me into the Harry Potter world approximately ten years ago with your absolutely enchanting and compelling performance.

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