Alan Rickman’s diary reveals that he wanted to finish Harry Potter

Alan Rickman has had a career full of diverse characters, but one of his most memorable was probably the role of Professor Severus Snape in the Harry Potter series.

Six years after the British actor died of pancreatic cancer, excerpts from his diaries are set to be published in a book called Madly, Deeply: The Diaries of Alan Rickman.

In the book – out October 4 – Rickman noted how he wanted to leave the wizarding franchise after the release of Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets in 2002.

Rickman played the role in six more films in the series, which ended in 2011.

Parts of the diary were recently published by the Guardian.

In a December 4, 2002 post, the Dogma star wrote, “In conversation with [agent] Paul Lyon-Maris on HP exit, which he thinks is possible. But here we are again in the project collision area. Repeats no more HP. They don’t want to hear it.”

RUPERT GRINT as Ron Weasley, ALAN RICKMAN as Severus Snape and DANIEL RADCLIFFE as Harry Potter in the fantasy film Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire from Warner Bros. Pictures AND TO REMAIN THE STUDIO PROPERTY.  NOT FOR SALE OR REDISTRIBUTION.
Rupert Grint as Ron Weasley (left), Alan Rickman as Severus Snape and Daniel Radcliffe as Harry Potter in 2005’s Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire.
close Murray

After being treated for prostate cancer, he reluctantly stayed on in 2006 to continue making films.

His January 30, 2006 entry read: “Finally yes to HP 5. The sensation is neither up nor down. The argument that wins is the one that says, “Go through with it. It’s your story.’”

Rickman also described how he felt about Professor Snape’s death and even wrote down his thoughts on the wizard’s passion for Harry Potter’s mother Lily.

LONDON - MARCH 9: Alan Rickman poses during a photocall held at his home on March 9, 2004 in London, England.  (Photo by Cambridge Jones/Getty Images)
Rickman died in 2016 at the age of 69.
Getty Images

“I finished the last Harry Potter book,” reads a July 2007 entry. “Snape dies heroically, Potter describes him to his children as one of the bravest men he ever knew and names his son Albus Severus.”

“It was a real rite of passage. A little information from [JK] Rowling seven years ago – Snape loved Lily – gave me a cliff to hold on to,” he added.

Elsewhere in his diary, he wrote that the first Harry Potter film in 2001 was “just meant to be on a big screen. It reaches a grandeur and depth to match John Williams’ hideous score.”

(Lr) Harry (DANIEL RADCLIFFE), Ron (RUPERT GRINT), Filch (DAVID BRADLEY) and Professor Snape (ALAN RICKMAN) in Warner Bros. Pictures'  "Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets."  PHOTOGRAPHS MAY BE USED FOR ADVERTISING, PROMOTIONAL, PUBLIC OR REVIEWS ONLY FOR THIS SPECIFIC CINEMA PICTURE AND REMAIN PROPERTY OF THE STUDIO.  NOT FOR SALE OR REDISTRIBUTION HARRY POTTER and all related marks are trademarks of and 2002 Warner Bros. All rights reserved.  Harry Potter Publishing Rights JKR
Daniel Radcliffe (left), Rupert Grint and Alan Rickman in 2002’s Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets.
Photo: David Berg

“Arriving in Radio City was like being a Beatle,” he wrote of attending the debut of the third film in 2004. “Thousands of fans screamed as we got out of the cars. Mainly for Daniel Radcliffe, but a rush for everyone. Not to mention getting on stage with 6,000.”

In 2018, letters from producer David Heyman to Rickman were unearthed, saying the Die Hard graduate was “frustrated” with his role as Snape. Alan Rickman’s diary reveals that he wanted to finish Harry Potter

Emma Bowman

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