Madly, Deeply

The Alan Rickman Diaries

Alan RickmanEdited by Alan Taylor

Madly, Deeply by Alan Rickman, Alan  Taylor (Paperback ISBN 9781838854805) book cover

Available as Paperback, Hardback, eBook, Downloadable audio

ALAN RICKMAN was a world-class actor, as well as a tireless political activist, an avid traveller and a devoted confidant and friend - and now, through his never-before-seen diaries, Rickman invites readers backstage and into his life


Alan Rickman remains one of the most beloved actors of all time across almost every genre, from his breakout role as Die Hard’s villainous Hans Gruber to his heart-wrenching run as Professor Severus Snape, and beyond. His air of dignity, his sonorous voice and the knowing wit he brought to each role continue to captivate new audiences today.

But Rickman’s artistry wasn’t confined to just his performances. Rickman’s writing details the extraordinary and the ordinary in a way that is anecdotal, indiscreet, witty, gossipy and utterly candid. He takes us behind the scenes on films and plays ranging from Sense & Sensibility, the Harry Potter series, Private Lives, My Name Is Rachel Corrie and many more.

The diaries run from 1993 to his death in 2016 and offer insight into both a public and private life. Here is Rickman the consummate professional actor, but also the friend, the traveller, the fan, the director, the enthusiast: in short, the real Alan Rickman. Here is a life fully lived, all detailed in intimate and characteristically plain-spoken prose. Reading the diaries is like listening to Rickman chatting to a close friend.

Madly, Deeply also includes a foreword by Emma Thompson and a selection of Rickman’s early diaries, dating from 1974 to 1982, when his acting life first began.

“Mesmerising … Witty and debonair, caustic and fretful, for which some readers may like him less, others love him more. Madly, deeply and, better, truly he writes about what it is to be an actor”

See more reviews

“Fascinating … Mostly pithy, always frank”
the Times

“The star’s thoughts reveal a man unwilling to suffer fools or mince his words – most of the time Alan Rickman’s voice was a purr, but it masked sharp claws … I got the feeling he was wonderful company. These diaries confirm it”
Anthony Quinn

“Insightful, moving and entertaining … The posthumously released diaries of Alan Rickman showcase both the late actor’s self-doubt and savage film criticism”
The Guide 2022

“His merciless verdicts on showbiz idiocy are tempered by a deep loyalty and humanity … So much of Rickman’s character as it was preserved on screen cannot be captured in words – his unmistakable voice, his towering presence and charisma. But on the page, six years after his death, new parts of him can be found”
new Statesman

Alan RickmanEdited by Alan Taylor

Alan Sidney Patrick Rickman (born 21 February 1946) was an English actor and theatre director. He was a renowned stage actor in modern and classical productions and a former member of the Royal Shakespeare Company. In film his best-known work featured roles in Die Hard, Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves, the Harry Potter series, Sense & Sensibility and Love, Actually. He won numerous awards including a BAFTA, Golden Globe and Emmy. He died on 14 January 2016.

Alan Taylor is a journalist and writer. He was founding editor of The Scottish Review of Books. He has edited several acclaimed anthologies, including The Assassin’s Cloak, a collection of the world’s best diarists. He is the author of Appointment in Arezzo: A Friendship with Muriel Spark and is the series editor of Spark’s collected novels.

Emma Thompson’s tribute to her friend Alan Rickman, at an event at the BFI marking the publication of his diaries.