The year 2016 is starting off cruelly. I didn’t even know I felt such an affinity with David Bowie until Monday morning, when I found out he was gone. But I’ve loved Alan Rickman actively for almost half my life.

What was the first role you saw him in? Mine was Colonel Brandon in Sense and Sensibility, fifteen years ago. I’ve seen him in seven or eight other roles since then—which is at least fifteen movies, because of Harry Potter—and it’s actually nice to know that there are so many more left for me to watch. But I’ll never be able to see him on stage now, and I’m crushed.

He’s so famous for playing villains, but they were really only a small percentage of his whole career. That gentle depth he brought to all his characters, the velvety voice, the kind eyes. You knew he was thoughtful and just . . . good.

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