RICK-HARD: THE ALAN RICKMAN DIARIES
In a new series, character actor, Severus Snape and human being Alan Rickman reveals his innermost thoughts.
The Secret of Ball-Musk.
Serge, my manager, is the worst human being I have ever met. I have never had so much success since I hired him and I’ve never been so f*cking depressed.
I’m sitting in his office waiting on the police and he’s grinning that cannibal’s grin. It’s been a good week (for him) but that smile means something else, something darker; I can just tell. Against my better judgement I ask him.
‘Can’t you smell it?’ he asks and he actually starts wafting at me.
‘No, what is…’ I stop in my tracks. The dirty bastard is actually doing it. ‘How long?’ I ask him.
‘3 weeks. I haven’t changed my knickers in 3 WEEKS!’
Okay. Let’s go back.
We were in Berlin, Serge and I. An independent film festival; pleasant enough, the going was good until he mentioned ‘the offer’. A 10 minute chat show slot, five minutes walk from the hotel and a bit of chat about the film festival and the play I’m doing in summer. Easy. Until the questions start.
‘So do you keep the robot costume at home?’ was the chat show host’s first question.
‘Sorry? Did you say robot costume?’, laughter from the audience. I can hear Serge above them all.
‘Yes, the gold suit. Do you get to keep it and wear it at home?’
The fellow looks earnest enough, his English is impeccable and I don’t sense he’s trying to get some kind of rise out of me. So I very politely ask him what he’s talking about, just as my eyes adjust to the studio lighting and I can finally make out the audience: men in weird costumes with colorful plastic swords; women with strange buns in their hair; and more than a few bemused looking chaps dressed in a rather iconic golden robot costume. Serge is sitting in the front row …absolutely pissing himself. He set this up. The C*NT!
My blood is running cold but I smile and ask the host who he thinks I am. The poor fellow does the touching his earpiece and looking around at the producer routine…
‘Mr Anthony Daniels? … C3P0?’
The audience is having a good time. They think it’s a clever sketch and any moment now Anthony is going to come on-set to triumphant applause. The mistake I make is misinterpreting the body language of the crew and production staff. I simply ASSUME they have cut. I relax into it and just start chatting.
‘So sorry about that chum, it appears someone is having a joke at our expense. I do know Anthony though, we go way back. I can get you his details and I suppose you could re-schedule. Be warned though, he’s not what he seems.’
I’m standing to leave, the host still has his hand on the earpiece, no doubt receiving a bit of grief. I lean in and say it…
‘The dirty bastard hasn’t changed his knickers since 1977, he thinks it’s the secret of his success.’
Of course the show was live. The clip was on You-Tube by the time Serge and I got to the exit. 3 million hits by the end of the day and invites to every chat show in the world.
Anthony was furious of course. He finally got to me this morning, leaped out of a taxi and head-butted me before I knew what was happening. Kicked me when I was down too. But that’s Daniels for you. If only people knew his story. Jesus. He was raving about how the spell was now broken, his knickers had lost their pungency now that the secret was out. He said I had doomed him and the entire Star Wars legacy. Who knows, maybe he’s right.
Of course someone filmed the attack, and Anthony subsequently walking into traffic and being hit by a bus. By the time I reached Serge’s office he was already watching it on YouTube. 5 million hits in 30 minutes.
Serge claims it’s the knickers. The offers are pouring in. My play is sold out. The police arrive. Serge is still in the toilet flushing away his ‘happy dust’ when they finish questioning me. They ask for a photo for the boys at the station. I could murder a gin.