Junk Drawer: Lesser-known Alan Rickman Roles


Editor’s Note: Dedicated in honor of the late Alan Rickman’s birthday today, Feb. 21

Anastasia: “Love, Actually” (2003)

I have seen very few romantic comedies in my life, “Love, Actually” being one of them. Several years after seeing it, I was surprised to find out that Alan Rickman plays Harry. While Harry’s story isn’t my favorite, Alan Rickman plays the role incredibly well. For those who have not seen the movie, “Love, Actually” follows ten different characters and explores their stories. Harry’s story involves him falling for his new secretary, Mia, even though he is contently married to his wife, Karen. This is not a movie I expected Alan Rickman to be in, but even so, he played the part very well. This isn’t a movie I would normally recommend, but if you’re a fan of Alan Rickman, it probably is worth the watch.

Austin: “Die Hard” (1988)

Alan Rickman held so many great roles in a variety of films, most notably, his standout role as Professor Snape in the “Harry Potter” series. In terms of his other roles, my pick for favorite lesser-known role of Alan’s has to be Hans Gruber from “Die Hard” with Bruce Willis. Hans was the main antagonist of John McClane, and Mr. Rickman was a perfect fit for this type of villian. With his low and menacing voice, Hans made for a worthy adversary to Willis’s John McClane. I feel as though many people have seen “Die Hard” at some point in their life, but forget that Rickman played a large part in this beginning chapter of one of Willis’s most famous film series. We will miss you Mr. Rickman. Your legacy will continue throughout history.

Ben: “Galaxy Quest” (1999)

“Galaxy Quest” was the first role I saw Alan Rickman in that wasn’t “Harry Potter.” And it might be my favorite. “Galaxy Quest” is a science-fiction comedy that parodies cult television series like “Star Trek.” Rickman plays Alexander Dane, a cantankerous and bitter actor trapped underneath the popularity of his television role Dr. Lazarus, the “Galaxy Quest” version of Dr. Spock. What makes Rickman so great in the film is that his iconic dry and deep voice clashes with the prosthetic alien headgear he always wears, and the purposely-cheesy dialogue. Fans of the movie will never forget one of the best quotes of all time: “By Grabthar’s hammer, by the suns of Worvan, you shall be avenged.”

Samantha: “Sense and Sensibility” (1995)

Sense and Sensibility as Colonel Brandon: Since I’m one of the more dreamy-romantic types, it’s no wonder I’m a fan of Jane Austen. While Pride and Prejudice holds a special spot in my heart, Sense and Sensibility takes close second. This goes for the movies as well as the books. Alan Rickman played many phenomenal roles in his lifetime, but he played Colonel Brandon with a gentleness that gave life to the literary character. The gentle suitor who loved a woman steadily and with honor fit well in Rickman’s interpretation. I’m sure many people felt a hole in their heart when they found out he passed, and though he was known for playing Severus Snape, he will always be Colonel Brandon to me.


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