A generation-spanning collection of 27 handwritten diaries kept by the late, great Alan Rickman are to be edited down into a single book and published, by Canongate, in 2022. As reported by The Guardian, the famously sharp-tongued actor began writing these memoirs in the early 1990s, with the intention that one day they would be published for the world to see.
The actor, who passed away in 2016 from pancreatic cancer, shares incredible details over 25 years of his storied career, tracking his thoughts and observations on acting, reviews of plays, interest in politics, and insights into his social life. Of course, we’re expecting quite a few behind-the-scenes stories from the set of the Harry Potter film franchise, given his pivotal role as Severus Snape from 2001 to 2011.
Simon Thorogood, the editorial director for Edinburgh-based publisher Canongate, purchased the rights to the diaries at auction from DHH literary agent, and has since handed them down to be edited and organised by Alan Taylor of the Scottish Review of Books. Titled The Diaries of Alan Rickman, the finished product is being aimed for fall 2022.
Canongate writes that the diaries “reveal the real Alan Rickman, funny, passionate, occasionally provocative, and give fresh insight into his art”.
“He wrote his diaries as if chatting with a close friend,” said the publisher. “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”.
In an interview with The Guardian, Rickman’s widow, Rima Horton, said that Rickman’s diaries are “anecdotal, indiscreet, witty, gossipy, and utterly candid”. And we’d expect nothing less from the man, who has been one of Hollywood’s most deeply respected actors ever since his masterful turn as the high-profile antagonist of 1988’s Die Hard, Hans Gruber.
While we may have to wait a while to get our hands on a copy of the book, knowing that these diaries – which Alan Rickman was obviously so dedicated to – will see the light of day in the near future, should bring great comfort to fans if such a compelling figure.