Alan Rickman Almost Turned Down 'Die Hard' Villain Role

When the 69-year-old actor read the script of the 1988 movie, he thought, 'What the hell is this? I'm not doing an action movie.'

AceShowbiz - Alan Rickman revealed he almost turned down his first film role in 1988's "Die Hard". Speaking at a BAFTA celebration of his work on Wednesday, April 15, Alan, who started out on the stage, admitted that "having a film career at all is a bit of a surprise."

The British actor recalled his initial disdain when he was first offered the film role two days after he arrived in Los Angeles in 1987. "I didn't know anything about LA. I didn't know anything about the film business... I'd never made a film before, but I was extremely cheap." After he read the script, he thought, "What the hell is this? I'm not doing an action movie."

Alan later agreed to do the film over the wit of the script and the progressive storyline. "Every single black character in that film is positive and highly intelligent. So, 28 years ago, that's quite revolutionary, and quietly so," he shared.

He also added his own flavor to his character Hans Gruber, who was originally to appear wearing terrorist attire. "I was just thinking: If I was wearing a suit and not all of this terrorist gear, then maybe there could be a scene where I put on an American accent, and he thinks I'm one of the hostages," he said, admitting to leaving a note with his suggestions on producer Joel Silver's table.

"I got Joel saying, 'Get the hell out of here, you'll wear what you're told.' But when I came back, I was handed a new script. It showed that it pays to have a little bit of theatre training," he explained.

Alan admitted he was nervous in the scenes involving guns. "If you look carefully, you'll see me blinking," he shared, "It is shocking how thrilling it is to shoot a machine gun, that I discovered."

Alan also discussed about his other films including "Harry Potter" series. He revealed that Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson and Rupert Grint's characters were played by "very small adults" wearing wigs for parts of the film due to child labor laws which left the young actors compelled to leave the set to do their homeworks.

"In the first film ['Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone'], if anybody ever wants to look, of course you've got the problem of kids who can only work a certain number of hours," Alan said, "Sometimes there were 300 children on set, and at certain points they all had to go off and do some schoolwork."

Talking about his role as Severus Snape, Alan got a clue from J.K. Rowling to help him with the role. "At the start I said I really need to talk to her, I don't know how to do this," he recalled, "She gave me one piece of information. I promised her I'd never share it and I never will. That's all; she really kept it to herself. She gave me one bit of information which let me know that whatever happened I had to drive down two roads until all the facts emerged. I knew there was ambiguity."

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