What Alan Rickman did for this kid with cancer on the "Harry Potter" set will get you right in the feels
Although it’s been year and a half since Alan Rickman passed away after a battle with cancer, his influence can still be felt in the acting world and beyond. In an interview with The Huffington Post, producer Paula DuPré Pesmen recalled the magic Rickman brought to Harry Potter, including the time he helped a kid with cancer appear in the film.
According to Pesmen — who worked on the first three Harry Potter movies — Rickman and the rest of the cast routinely spent time on the Harry Potter set visiting with young Potterheads who were battling serious illnesses. For a kid named Jay who was battling Stage 4 neuroblastoma, touring the place where the stories were brought to life was enjoyable, but he wanted to be in the film and told Pesmen as much.
Pesmen kindly turned down the young fan’s request to get some screen time with the other Potter stars, until Rickman morphed into Snape and made magic happen on the spot.
“Alan looked at me, and he kind of went into his Snape-mode in costume, and said, ‘Why isn’t this child in the film?'” DuPré Pesman told The Huffington Post. “Everyone had a good laugh, and Alan took him by the hand and put him into the crowd of kids as they were panning across. The back of him is actually in a shot.”
That particular shot Pesman references took place in Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban during Remus Lupin’s Boggart class, but it didn’t actually make the final cut. Still, hearing about how Rickman went out of his way to make an incredible dream come true for Jay — who passed from cancer in 2005 — is totally pulling at our heartstrings.
Even though the result of this heartfelt gesture didn’t make it to the big screen, we still count Rickman’s generosity as one of Professor Snape’s best moments in the Harry Potter movies.