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Alan Rickman’s 5 greatest genre film roles, from archangel to wizard

We look back at the late great Alan Rickman’s best genre film roles

alan rickman

There’s no denying that the late Alan Rickman was an absolutely stellar actor, but his versatility and uniqueness meant he was also an unparalleled gift from the performing arts gods when it came to science fiction and fantasy roles. Here are our absolute favourites of Rickman’s genre filmography…

Metatron, Dogma (1999)

After years of costume dramas, biopics and action flicks, Alan Rickman finally ventured into fantasy in Kevin Smith’s biblical comedy Dogma. In it he played the Voice of God, the junk-less archangel Metatron, whose negative attitude and constant exasperation had us in stitches until the end.

Dr Lazarus/Alexander Dane, Galaxy Quest (1999)

Rickman’s first go at science fiction came in the form of Alexander Dane’s TV alter ego, the now iconic Dr Lazarus. Galaxy Quest had an amazing cast – Tim Allen, Sigourney Weaver, Sam Rockwell, Tony Shalhoub – but Rickman’s deadpan and bitter Richard III has-been made us laugh, cry and gasp, and completely stole the film.

Severus Snape, The Harry Potter Series (2001-2011)

In perhaps his most famous and definitely his longest running film role, Rickman fantastically brought to life the wizard that managed to divide a generation. Was Snape a true hero or was he just a bully? It doesn’t matter. He made black robes and greasy hair look cool, which is a huge feat in itself.

Marvin, The Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy (2005)

Forget R2-D2, C-3PO, Wall-E and Ava: Marvin the Paranoid Android is where it’s at. The sassy, depressed robot was one of the best things about The Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy, and it’s all down to Rickman lending his velvety but hilariously bored-sounding voice to the film.

Judge Turpin, Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber Of Fleet Street (2007)

We first got to hear Alan Rickman singing on camera in Truly, Madly, Deeply (1990) when he dueted ‘The Sun Ain’t Gonna Shine Anymore’ with Juliet Stevenson. In all honesty, the singing wasn’t amazing, but his enthusiasm brought us more joy than we could have ever imagined possible. So when Rickman was cast as Judge Turpin in Sweeney Todd, a musical, in 2007 we were practically jumping.