Alan Rickman dead: How the late actor hid Professor Snape’s story arc from everyone

'No I can't do that - I know what is going to happen and you don’t'

Jack Shepherd
Thursday 14 January 2016 14:00

Alan Rickman’s most iconic role may very well be Professor Snape from the Harry Potter series. Throughout those films, we see his character go from a brooding villain to heartbreaking hero who would do anything for the ones he loved.

However, when the first films in the series were being made, JK Rowling had not yet published The Deathly Hallows and Severus Snape was presumed to be a bad guy the whole way through.

Rickman knew he wasn’t aligned with Voldemort the whole time, Rowling having previously told him how Snape was a secret agent, working for Dumbledore. Apparently he had to hide his knowledge even to the directors of the films.

"It was quite amusing, too, because there were times when a director would tell Alan what to do in a scene and he would say something like, 'No I can't do that - I know what is going to happen and you don’t,'" series producer David Heyman told the LA Times.

"He had a real understanding of the character and now looking back, you can see there was always more going on there - a look, an expression, a sentiment - that hint at what is to come... the shadow that he casts in these films is a huge one and the emotion he conveys is immeasurable.”

On numerous occasions, Rickman had to hide his knowledge from journalists asking difficult questions about the Harry Potter story. In an interview with RTE, he hinted at a “little piece of information, which I always said I would never share with anybody and never have, and never will.”

"Certainly, I did say I needed to talk to her before I could get a handle on how to play it, and we did have a phone conversation," he said. "She certainly didn't tell me what the end of the story was going to be in any way at all, so I was having to buy the books along with everybody else to find out, 'And now what?'

"No, she gave me one little piece of information, which I always said I would never share with anybody and never have, and never will. It wasn't a plot point, or crucial in any tangible way, but it was crucial to me as a piece of information that made me travel down that road rather than that one or that one or that one.”

Alan Rickman dies aged 69

Rickman passed away at the age of 69 after suffering with cancer.

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