Daniel Radcliffe was initially “intimidated” and “terrified” by Alan Rickman
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Daniel Radcliffe was initially "intimidated" and "terrified" by Alan Rickman

Despite becoming close friends in the end, Daniel Radcliffe has revealed that he was initially “terrified” of Alan Rickman.

While Radcliffe rose to prominence as the titular character of the Harry Potter series, the esteemed Rickman starred as Severus Snape, a mean professor who slowly became a fan favourite as the series progressed. As audiences learned more about his complicated nature and backstory, Snape rose to become a more empathetic character. 

Rickman portrayed the character perfectly, and the role only made the actor more widely loved. He appeared in every movie in the franchise, and his inevitable death in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2 was made even more sad when Harry was able to view his memories, revealing a much softer side to Snape. 

Snape’s deep, recognisable voice made his character even more intimidating. Yet, Rickman was so convincing that he actually scared Radcliffe for several years, until he was about 14. 

Appearing on the Happy Sad Confused podcast, Radcliffe was both delighted and moved when the host, Josh Horowitz, played him a clip of Rickman from his appearance on the show shortly before his death. 

Rickman passed away in 2016 at the age of 69 after battling cancer. His death deeply affected Radcliffe, who soon warmed to Rickman as he got older. The clip of Rickman featured him heaping praise on Radcliffe, leading the latter to describe his relationship with his co-star. 

Radcliffe revealed that he was initially “so intimidated” by the actor. “How can you not be by that voice? Even hearing that voice you forget quite how low it was until it echoes through you. I was so intimidated by him for the first three movies.” 

He added, “I was terrified by him and was like, ‘This guy hates me.'” Yet, as he got a little older, he realised that Rickman could see how dedicated of an actor Radcliffe was. “Somewhere along the lines he saw that I really wanted to do this and work at it.”

In the end, Rickman and Radcliffe developed a close friendship, with Rickman giving the young actor plenty of advice, essentially becoming a mentor figure. “He cut short a vacation in Canada to come and see me in Equus. He saw every piece of stage work I did when he was alive,” Radcliffe stated. 

Watch the podcast below.