The Royal Shakespeare Company's Alan Rickman, who co-stars in and nearly steals Die Hard from Bruce Willis, admits, "I have absolutely no time for margaret Thatcher's England. I think she is a narrowwing pernicious influence. I think worrying things are going on in England - a real apathy." Rickman, who plays a German terrorist in Die Hard, says, "Anything to do with the arts is of little importance to a government of (her) kind. Small theater companies die. The voice of dissent is quietly killed
off. Young actors have to make their mistakes on the West End stage or in film because there isn't a training ground any more. The West End takes fewer and fewer risks."|
Does this mean Rickman would rather move here? Only if he could jump back and forth between the States and England. "If you could build a house on a trampoline," he says with a laugh, "that would suit me fine."
Rickman, who makes his film debut in Die Hard, has been drawing solid reviews for his role as the commando who takes over the Fox Plaza in an attempt to steal hundreds of millions of dollars in negotiable bonds in Die Hard. But he will not be playing another role that he created on Broadway - that of the decadent Marquis de Valmont in Les Liaisons Dangereuses, currently being filmed in two versions by Milos Forman and Stephen frears. "I think there were all sorts of cances of all sorts of people doing the film," he says. "It felt like (there was) a really good chance when I left new York. I think it's all for the best."
Rickman acknowledges that making his film debut was "exciting and worrying and nerve-racking. It was like going to a new school, or the first day on a new job. The people were very nice."
How about Loose Bruce?
"He's just the best, he's very good at looking after the atmosphere on the set. He's very funny - kind of what you expect. But he's also very skilled in front of the cameras; he knows exactly what he's doing."
Now, Rickman has begun work on the new John Patrick Shanley/Norman Jewison flick, The January Man, the Oscar-winning team's first project since Moonstruck. "it's a comedy-murder-drama thing. It's about Kevin Kline being dragged out of 'retirement' as a fireman to go back to being a policeman to solve serial murders that have been going on in New York. I'm his next door neighbor - an English painter and computer expert. It's odder than Moonstruck; it's got a darker edge. There are all sorts of twists and turns. It was wonderful - I came off a huge-budgeted Hollywood movie and went to a place where you could hear yourself think."
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