“I thought I was out of a job”: Alan Rickman Was Scared He Would Have to Quit Bruce Willis’ ‘Die Hard’ Even Without Shooting One Scene

"I thought I was out of a job": Alan Rickman Was Scared He Would Have to Quit Bruce Willis' 'Die Hard' Even Without Shooting One Scene

Alan Rickman is a name that needs no introduction for the Harry Potter fans. The actor played the character of Professor Snape in all eight parts of the Harry Potter franchise, based on J. K. Rowling’s book series. The actor earned global fame from the role that he played for more than a decade. However, the actor also played a prominent role in Bruce Willis’ superhit franchise Die Hard.

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Alan Rickman
Alan Rickman

Rickman recalled in an interview about almost losing the film Die Hard and ending his action movie career due to an incident in the early phase of his life.


Also read-“Alan, you don’t understand, this doesn’t happen”: Alan Rickman Was Warned After He Rejected Bruce Willis’ Action Movie That Made Over $100 Million in Profit

Alan Rickman almost lost his part in Bruce Willis’ Die Hard

One of the most talented veteran actors in the Hollywood industry, Alan Rickman started his career with the action film Die Hard. However, due to one major incident, his career could have ended even before it took off.


Die Hard was Rickman’s first action film, hence he was inexperienced in the genre. When he started preparing for his scenes, he realized it was significantly different from theatre. However, he became worried about his role when he sustained an injury.

Alan Rickman 3 in Die Hard Bruce Willis
Alan Rickman in Die Hard

In conversation with Empire, he recalled,


“I thought I had ripped a ligament on the very first shot. Turned out I’d torn a cartilage, but I knew enough to go downstairs and see the doctor. I said, ‘I think I heard something crack in my knee.’ I was jumping down from a small ledge. He said, ‘You may have torn a ligament. If you have, you’re out of action for six months.’ I hadn’t even shot a scene! I was still in my costume, and I said, ‘Could you pull the trouser leg down over that splint thing?’ I went back up to the 33rd floor and carried on shooting. But the doctor said, ‘Don’t put any weight on that leg!’”

However, the foot injury could not prevent the actor from completing the scene in the film. He did the scene while standing on one leg for the entire take.

After the doctor diagnosed his injury, Alan Rickman thought his acting career was over. He said,


“Nobody knows, but that’s what I’m doing! The next morning, they drew off this fluid, and it was the appropriate color to say that it was a cartilage, and therefore, you know, you’ll recover. There’s a shape you’re gonna have to your career, and then there’s what really happens. I thought I was out of a job.”

Alan Rickman’s hit films include Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves, Michael Collins, Sense and Sensibility, and Quigley Down Under, among others.

Also read- “Stupider films have been made”: Harry Potter Star Alan Rickman Proud of ‘Die Hard’ Despite Massive Plot Holes


Alan Rickman was already a stage star before Die Hard

Harry Potter star Alan Rickman debuted with Bruce Willis’ film Die Hard. However, he was a veteran stage performer and had already starred in productions like Sherlock Holmes, Romeo and Juliet, and The Seagull.

When the actor moved to Los Angeles to act in films, he landed Die Hard within two days. He recalled in a conversation with BAFTA,


“We finished six months in New York and, I don’t know how any of this happened. I didn’t know anything about LA, I didn’t know anything about the film business. I went to meet some casting directors, I went to meet some producers, and I think it was two days after I got there, I was offered Die Hard. Never made a film before.”

Alan Rickman
Die Hard Star, Alan Rickman

Rickman was initially not in favor of doing the film because of its genre. But his agent encouraged him to take up the role,

“‘I read it and I said, ‘What the hell is this? I’m not doing an action movie.’ And agents and people said, ‘Alan, you don’t understand. This doesn’t happen. You’ve only been in LA for two days, and you’ve been asked to do this film.’ I suppose ignorance was bliss.”

Die Hard was released in 1988 and became the highest-grossing action movie of that year. It grossed $140 million worldwide and also earned four Academy Award nominations.


Die Hard is available for streaming on Fubo, Hulu, and Apple TV.

Also read- “You’ll wear what you are told”: Harry Potter Star Alan Rickman Was Told to “Get the Hell Out” Of Bruce Willis’ ‘Die-Hard’ Set


Source- BAFTA and Empire


Written by Arushi

Arushi is a keen follower of Hollywood movies and TV shows. She has an experience of 5+ years in content writing and loves to write on everything around Hollywood and fan fiction. An ardent Hollywood buff, Arushi loves to tell stories through her writing and has contributed to several posts. You will find her following celebrities and enjoying classics in her free time.