Emma Thompson on Alan Rickman: “He was the ultimate ally in life, art and politics – I trusted him absolutely”

"He was, above all things, a rare and unique human being," says Rickman's Love Actually and Harry Potter co-star


Following the tragic death of Alan Rickman, his former co-star Emma Thompson has paid tribute to her “friend” and “ally”, who she describes as “a rare and unique human being”.


Thompson acted with Rickman in several films, most notably as his wife in Love Actually and as Professor Trelawny in the Harry Potter films. She also starred in his directorial debut The Winter Guest in 1996. 

Alan was my friend and so this is hard to write because I have just kissed him goodbye.

What I remember most in this moment of painful leave-taking is his humour, intelligence, wisdom and kindness. His capacity to fell you with a look or lift you with a word. The intransigence which made him the great artist he was – his ineffable and cynical wit, the clarity with which he saw most things, including me, and the fact that he never spared me the view. I learned a lot from him.

He was the finest of actors and directors. I couldn’t wait to see what he was going to do with his face next. I consider myself hugely privileged to have worked with him so many times and to have been directed by him. 

He was the ultimate ally. In life, art and politics. I trusted him absolutely.


He was, above all things, a rare and unique human being and we shall not see his like again.