Alan Rickman Hated An Iconic Element Of Harry Potter

Alan Rickman hated John Williams' iconic Harry Potter score.

By Charlene Badasie | Published

Just a few weeks from the release of Alan Rickman’s collection of handwritten diaries titled Madly Deeply: The Diaries of Alan Rickman, a new excerpt reveals which element of Harry Potter the actor despised the most. In an entry following the premiere of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone (Sorcerer’s Stone in America) the actor expressed his disdain for the film’s background score.

“The film should only be seen on a big screen,” Alan Rickman wrote via The Guardian. “It acquires a scale and depth that matches the hideous score by John Williams. Party afterward at the Savoy is much more fun.” While the Harry Potter star may not have enjoyed the composition, the soundtrack was nominated for Best Original Score at the 74th Academy Awards.

The music also plays a huge role in introducing many character-specific themes that are used in at least one sequel. These include two themes for Voldemort, two for Hogwarts, a Diagon Alley theme, a Quidditch theme, a flying theme, two friendship themes, and the primary score called Hedwig’s Theme. This piece of music, which Alan Rickman hates, was reprised and developed in every Harry Potter film, as well as the spinoff Fantastic Beasts movies.

alan rickman harry potter

Henry Holt publishers previously announced that it will be releasing Madly Deeply: The Diaries of Alan Rickman on October 18. The actor wrote his diaries with the intention of future publication. And by the time of his death in 2016, he had amassed 27 volumes. Now, his writings have been edited into one volume which paints a deep portrait of a renowned actor, a political activist, an avid traveler, and a devoted friend.

Starting in the early ’90s and kept for the rest of his life, the diaries offer new insight into the mind of Alan Rickman. In his own inimitable voice, the actor details the extraordinary and the ordinary with great depth and intimacy. The book’s introduction features an entry from his Sense and Sensibility co-star Kate Winslet. It also features an afterword from his wife Rima Horton, chronicling life after his last diary entry in December of 2015, Variety reports.

Known for his deep, languid voice, Alan Rickman at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London and became a member of the Royal Shakespeare Company. He found cinematic fame in 1988’s Die Hard as villain Hans Gruber. Since then he played a wide variety of characters in iconic films across many genres, including Truly, Madly, Deeply, The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street, Love Actually, and Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves.

However, Alan Rickman’s portrayal of the complicated Professor Severus Snape in every Harry Potter film made the British actor a household name. Released between 2001 and 2011, the movies are based on J.K. Rowling’s series of books which follow the lives of Harry Potter and his friends, Hermione Granger and Ron Weasley.

The main story arc chronicles the trio’s adventures at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, with the main focus on Harry’s struggle against the evil Lord Voldemort. When Snape, who was masquerading as the Dark Lord’s servant, dies heroically Potter describes him to his children as one of the bravest men he ever knew and calls his son Albus Severus. This moment is described as a genuine rite of passage in Alan Rickman’s book, which he says gave him “a cliff edge to hang on to.”