Actor Alan Rickman died Thursday at 69 from cancer. Celebrities everywhere, especially his friends and co-workers from the Harry Potter series, came out on social media to express their grief and say what a great and inspiring guy he was. Also, that they're sick of really great people dying.
One celebrity tribute is a little harder to find. Daniel Radcliffe, who played Harry Potter himself, doesn't do the usual thing of having a Twitter, Instagram and Facebook account that are all connected to each other like a snake eating its own tail. He only uses Google Plus, the Azkaban of platforms, and that's where he posted this touching essay on what an influence Rickman had on him as an actor and man. Rickman saw Radcliffe grow up, and was kind of a father figure. Radcliffe writes:
Alan Rickman is undoubtedly one of the greatest actors I will ever work with. He is also, one of the loyalest and most supportive people I've ever met in the film industry. He was so encouraging of me both on set and in the years post-Potter. I'm pretty sure he came and saw everything I ever did on stage both in London and New York. He didn't have to do that. I know other people who've been friends with him for much much longer than I have and they all say "if you call Alan, it doesn't matter where in the world he is or how busy he is with what he's doing, he'll get back to you within a day".
People create perceptions of actors based on the parts they played so it might surprise some people to learn that contrary to some of the sterner(or downright scary) characters he played, Alan was extremely kind, generous, self-deprecating and funny. And certain things obviously became even funnier when delivered in his unmistakable double-bass.
As an actor he was one of the first of the adults on Potter to treat me like a peer rather than a child. Working with him at such a formative age was incredibly important and I will carry the lessons he taught me for the rest of my life and career. Film sets and theatre stages are all far poorer for the loss of this great actor and man.
He also shared this photo of them messing around on the set of Harry Potter:
And captioned it:
I like this photo. It was taken, if I'm not mistaken, while rehearsing a scene where Alan clipped me and Rupert round the back of a head with a book. We all, apparently, found this hard to do without laughing.