Though he was probably best known to younger generations for his role as Professor Snape in the Harry Potter franchise, he had great success in films since the late 1980s, starring in memorable roles in Die Hard, Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves, Sense and Sensibility, Michael Collins, and Love, Actually. He also took a turn behind the camera as director for The Winter Guest starring Emma Thompson and her mother Phyllida Law. Rickman won an Emmy and Golden Globe for his work in the 1996 HBO film, Rasputin.
An accomplished actor of the stage, which is where he got his start, he worked with the Royal Shakespeare Company and earned a Tony nomination in 1998 for Les Liaisons Dangereuses. Notable roles include Marc Anthony opposite Helen Mirren in a production of Cleopatra. He also directed the play My Name is Rachel Corrie in 2005.
Rickman recently starred with Kate Winslet in A Little Chaos. His last film was the Alice in Wonderland sequel, Alice Through the Looking Glass, in which he voices the Blue Catepillar.
Rickman had been married to his wife, Rima Horton, since 2012, though they had been together since 1965.