I have not been very faithful in writing here and for that I am sorry. I have worked some in the background trying to make some changes to formatting and moving to a different design, and to be honest, I am not very good at it. As a result, the process has taken much longer than I wanted and life has once again gotten in the way.
However, I could not let today go by without writing down my feelings and I figure sharing them would be the best thing I could do. As I am sure you are all aware, we lost one of the greatest actors of his time today. Alan Rickman died at age 69 from cancer. Just typing those words has me feeling very sad and depressed in a way that surprised me deeply today. There are many many wonderful articles that came out today detailing the life and legacy of this great man. This is not meant to be one of those. This is me saying goodbye to someone who has inspired me and mourning in the best way I know how. From the point my wife texted me, to now as write this, I have been depressed over the loss of someone I never met. Not only someone I have never met, but someone I really had no chance of meeting. It has affected me profoundly, to say the least.
Now I am not generally the type to mourn for people I have never met. To be honest, there are very few celebrities that I can even name on sight, and fewer still that I care to try. For me it has always been the characters that matter. The people who portray them are the props that inspire the imagination and move the plot. Now don’t get me wrong, I respect and admire them for their skills. It is not easy to inspire imagination. It is not easy subsume yourself into another character and transport an audience into a different place or time. Please don’t think that I don’t recognize the talent that these actors have. I just don’t really care to know who they are in real life. I am much more interested to know the characters they want to show me.
Alan Rickman was different. Now I am sure by now you are assuming that he was different because he portrayed a certain professor in the most awesome fictional universe ever created. But honestly, you would be wrong. Now before you start the outcry, you are not wrong that the Harry Potter universe is the most awesome fictional universe ever created. Nor are you wrong that Alan Rickman was amazing and will forever be remembered as Severus Snape – The Half Blood Prince. However, that portrayal is not what made me adore Alan Rickman. In fact, the casting of Alan Rickman as Snape has always felt the most natural of any of the actors from the Harry Potter movies because I was already a huge fan of his. As a matter of fact, I have been a fan of his since I was 9. To this day, when I hear his name the first thing that comes to mind is the Sheriff of Nottingham threatening to cut out Robin Hood’s heart with a spoon because “it’ll hurt more you twit” In fact it seems like I have grown up watching Alan Rickman in things that I love. From Colonel Brandon to Judge Turpin, the Voice of God to the voice of Absolem I have loved them all. Snape is the just another in a long list of characters he portrayed that captured my heart.
None of this, though, is why Alan Rickman’s death has affected me so profoundly today. The fact is that there is one movie that he played in that I have never cared for, and yet it is his role that inspires me the most. That is his portrayal of Hans Gruber in Die Hard. This is widely regarded as his breakout moment in acting, and he was 40 years old. In fact he didn’t start acting at all until he was almost 30. Prior to acting he was a successful graphic designer. The idea that someone could turn their entire life around and still be so talented and successful is inspiring. It was not long after learning this, that I decided I needed to write more. I started this blog soon thereafter and began writing ideas for prose. Unfortunately, I have not, as of yet, lived up to the inspiration.
I am sad today because one of my personal heroes has died. I am sad because the world lost a wonderful actor. Mostly though, I am sad that I have allowed “life to get in the way” of my living up to my potential. I will try to turn this around and hopefully I will succeed. In the meantime, I will say Goodbye to Alan Rickman. You will be missed. Always.