The film world lost yet another legend today (January 14) with the passing of British actor Alan Rickman. While most remember him as Professor Severus Snape in the eight Harry Potter movies and for his distinctively droll baritone, Rickman’s nearly 40-year career spanned stage and screen. Not bad for a former graphic designer from London.
His versatility across genres quickly turned him into a household name, and we’d like to take the time to acknowledge his four best roles outside of the wizarding world of Harry Potter.
4: Sheriff of Nottingham in Robin Hood: Men In Tights
Rickman’s deadpan Sheriff stole every scene in this Mel Brooks-directed comedy. “Do you prefer pain or death?”
3: Dr. Lazarus in Galaxy Quest
The concept of the tortured artists isn’t new to cinema, but Rickman did his part to bring comedy and ethos to the role of a classically trained actor typecast as a Spock knockoff.
2: The Metatron in Dogma
The literal Voice of God is hard to personify, but Kevin Smith knew what he was doing when he brought Rickman along for the ride. He made it clear exactly how hard it is to be an angel.
1: Hans Gruber in Die Hard
Gruber is one of the most iconic movie villains of all time thanks to Rickman’s unique combination of menace and acerbic wit. We can’t imagine anyone who deserves to go toe-to-toe with Bruce Willis more.