Publisher Canongate has announced that it will edit and publish the diaries of actor Alan Rickman as a book. Rickman, who died in 2016, kept 27 volumes worth of diaries spanning 25 years of his career. Canongate will publish The Diaries of Alan Rickman in fall 2022 worldwide, while Holt will publish them in the United States. According to the announcement in The Guardian, Rickman began keeping these diaries as his career took off on stage with the Royal Shakespeare Company in the early 1990s. He intended to publish them one day and continued keeping them as he became a fixture of the big screen in roles such as Die Hard's Hans Gruber, the Sheriff of Nottingham in Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves, and Harry Potter's Severus Snape.
“I’m delighted that Canongate will be publishing Alan’s diaries, and couldn’t have wished for a finer appointment of editor than Alan Taylor,” says Rima Horton, Rickman’s widow. “The diaries reveal not just Alan Rickman the actor, but the real Alan – his sense of humour, his sharp observation, his craftsmanship and his devotion to the arts.”
“More than anything though, the diaries reveal the real Alan Rickman, funny, passionate, occasionally provocative, and give fresh insight into his art,” Canongate stated to The Guardian. “He wrote his diaries as if chatting with a close friend. They provide pitch-perfect vignettes: short, pithy paragraphs painting big pictures, and offering intriguing insights into himself, his peers and the world around him. They are intimate, perceptive and very funny.”
Simon Thorogood, editorial director at Canongate, bought the rights to Riclman's diaries at auction from DHH literary agency. He says that Rickman “fans everywhere are in for a rare treat."
Rickman's career included roles in beloved films like Galaxy Quest, Sense and Sensibility, The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, and Love, Actually, and he chronicled his experiences through all of them in his journals. Rickman was 69 when he died from pancreatic cancer.
Kate Winslet starred opposite Rickman in multiple films. Shortly after his death, she recalled his generosity with the money he earned from what is likely his best-known role, Harry Potter's Snape.
“He was always a great big softy. If there was one word I could use to really describe Al, it would be kind. He was so kind,” Winslet wrote in an issue of Entertainment Weekly. “At Al’s memorial, Juliet Stevenson told the story of how whenever Al would go out to supper and anyone else would try and pay, he would somehow have phoned ahead or slipped his credit card ahead of the meal so no one even got a look at the check. He’d just say, ‘I’ve got two words for you: Harry Potter.’ And he became known for doing that.”