Lustbox: Alan Rickman

The two most appealing things about Alan Rickman (this sounds like the beginning of a very poor joke I know) are his voice and his mouth, and both of those things make him utterly perfect for playing a villain. I award him, and his curling upper lip, the title of Most Fabulous Sneer ever.

He is, however, a bit of a scene stealer. The film Truly, Madly, Deeply, for example, had some vomit-inducingly winsome moments (an excess of snot from Juliet Stevenson, and the spectacularly irksome hopping scene on the South Bank that had me chewing the arm off the person sitting next to me in the Brixton Ritzy, and I’d never met them before).

And yet, the electric presence of Rickman as the ghost of the dead cello-playing boyfriend raised the quality of the film. He made the new, wet (but having the benefit of a pulse) love interest, played by Michael Maloney, appear terribly dull in comparison.

Richard Armitage has recently thrown down a pretty impressive gauntlet in the Robin Hood villain stakes, but way back in 1991, in Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves, Rickman stole the show from Kevin Costner playing the dastardly Sheriff of Nottingham. If I’d have been Maid Marion, hell, if I’d been Friar Tuck, I know whose horse I’d prefer to ride off on. Rickman was also superb as Hans Gruber in Die Hard.

More recently, Harry Potter fans will know him for his role as Severus Snape. I’ve been reading that Tim Roth was actually first choice for the role. This one is problematical for me, because, in the books, Snape is supposed to be physically greasy and repellant. Rickman just can’t play ugly, he’s too damn sexy. But if ever there were a man to convince a nice girl to head straight to the dark side, it would be Alan Rickman.

For more Lustbox entries, see here

Posted by Inkface


Filed under Lustbox

6 responses to “Lustbox: Alan Rickman

  1. arialbold

    He was also fabulous in that much under-rated and hard-to-find “Bob Roberts”, in which Tim Robbins plays the eponymous guitar wielding right-wing independent politico.

    Playing Roberts’ manager, Lucas Hart III, Rickman sneers his way through allegations of coke dealing and drug running. When his candidate gets caught up in some potential new scandal, he looks into the eyes of the agog media pack and pushing them out of the way says, “Excuse me, I am going to pray.”

    If you’ve never seen Bob Roberts, worth a watch, not least for cameos from Susan Sarandon and many others including lustbox favourite, James Spader.

    • wallomrslug

      I love Alan Rickman…although not the same lustful way you understand

      A very gifted actor, brilliant stage prescence, a scene stealer in the films like you say and a very unique, silky voice which can’t help but be endearing, even if he is commiting murder or other such atrocities at the time.

      I’ve had the pleasure of meeting him several times. He is a very nice man as well.

  2. inkface

    Oooh how exciting. I feel practically related now I know that.

  3. If you ever come across a 1990 movie called “Quigley Down Under”, it is worth watching for Alan Rickman’s brilliant scenery-chewing villain. It’s a western set in Australia and it isn’t bad at all. Tom Selleck plays Quigley but the real star of the movie is the Australian landscape and Quigley’s 1874 Sharps rifle. And Rickman, of course, who steals every scene he’s in.

  4. Qwerty

    I saw the lovely Mr R at the theatre last year (in the audience. The play was dull so I mainly watched him instead). On the way out, I found myself right next to him, and heard him murmur to his companion. By crikey, that voice. Warm and chocolatey and illegal. I could do nothing else other than stagger into the bar for a steadying snifter.

    Quick nod to him in ‘Sense & Sensibility’. Also starring the Lustbox-able Greg Wise.

  5. hidden

    I’ve started a blog called “Dear Alan Rickman, Amen: meditations on a higher power.” (

    It’s not a traditional fan site. I’m a fan of course, but I’m considering questions about our interest in actors and higher powers and why not do that using an actor like Alan Rickman. It also has some fun stuff, like “If I were a better person, Michael Palin would be my higher power.”

    If you’ve got a spare moment, you may want to take a glance. Thanks for your great entry. I’m certainly going to link it!

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