Alan Rickman, known best in the United States as Professor Snape from the Harry Potter series, has died at the age of 69, his family announced on Thursday.
In a statement, his family wrote, “The actor and director Alan Rickman has died from cancer at the age of 69. He was surrounded by family and friends.”
Rickman had an illustrious career, earning a Tony nomination in 1985 for his work in Les Liaisons Dangereuses. He received his big Hollywood break in 1988, playing the villain Hans Gruber in Die Hard alongside Bruce Willis. He also won Emmy and Golden Globe Awards for portraying Rasputin in 1996’s Rasputin: Dark Servant of Destiny.
But most recognize Rickman as the mysterious Severus Snape in the Harry Potter films. He played the role for all eight films over the course of 10 years. Harry Potter creator J.K. Rowling made a statement about Rickman’s death on Twitter Thursday.
There are no words to express how shocked and devastated I am to hear of Alan Rickman's death. He was a magnificent actor & a wonderful man.
— J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) January 14, 2016
Rickman is survived by his wife and partner of 50 years Rima Horton. He will be greatly missed and never forgotten.