Alan Rickman Video Interview On ‘Nobel Son,’ ‘Harry Potter’
With his new Harry Potter film the #1 movie in America, Alan Rickman discusses Nobel Son and Harry Potter.
Well, Kaitlin, thanks for the question. Well, he thinks he's great, which is all I know. It's for you to say that he's unsympathetic. That may well be true. [Laughs.] But what's enjoyable is to play somebody who thinks he's absolutely the bee's knees.
See, the thing is, I never attach a label to any characters I play. Maybe some part of the answer is in that. They're all just people to me. They want different things and I don't make any differences between some of the darker characters I've played or some of the sweeter souls that I've played.
Well it's been an extraordinary experience and kind of unique. Especially to work with something that's so worldwide, on the one hand, and something that's involved watching, specifically, three young people go from 12 to 19. And they're still sane, which is remarkable because their workload is very different from mine. I shoot 'Harry Potter' for seven weeks a year and the rest of that 52 weeks I'm doing all sorts of other things.
Well the next one comes out next summer and I think I finished 'Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince' -- I don't know -- a year ago? [Laughs.] No, I never pick out particular moments, and particularly playing Professor Snape; it's such a kind of sense of a continuous energy of: what's he thinking? what's he doing? what's he about? And nobody should really know right until the end.
I also direct so I've directed a play in London which is coming to New York, I hope, next year. I'm going to direct a film called 'The House in Paris.' I've just started working with Tim Burton on his film 'Alice in Wonderland.' Part of it's live action, part's animation, part's stop-motion so it's very very technically complicated. My character, the caterpillar, is animated, but it will be with my face on the caterpillar. So your guess is a good as mine at this point in time as to what it's going to look like, but it's always great to work with Tim.
I guess I must have developed a relationship; otherwise he wouldn't have employed me again, and I wouldn't have said yes. But it means that there are all sorts of shortcuts I suppose. It means, I suppose, that I really like his and Jody Savin, his writing partner's, work. You know, Their work resists labels, and it's like a healthy playground.
It's just a kind of shift of concentration. You know, you're still the same person. You're still the same functioning, acting animal. You've only got the same head, hands, feet, body, imagination to work with. I guess you just have to learn quickly how to organize your concentration. You know, you're much more in charge of the event on stage, and on film there's a lot of noise and a lot of people doing a lot of difficult stuff all around you, so you have to just learn over time how to shut it out.