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Alan Rickman Wanted To Quit Harry Potter Before The Prizoner Of Azkaban

Throughout the eight "Harry Potter" films, which were released over a ten-year span between 2001 and 2011, some cast members had to be replaced in the sequels. For example, Albus Dumbledore was played by Richard Harris in the first two movies, but Harris sadly passed away before the third movie was filmed. Dumbledore was then played by Michael Gambon in the remaining "Harry Potter" movies. 

Additionally, Richard Bremmer played Lord Voldemort in the first three films, but in "Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire," when Voldemort regains his own autonomous human form, the producers decided to recast the Dark Lord with Ralph Fiennes for the remaining films. Other characters whose actors changed throughout the series include Lavender Brown, Vincent Crabbe, and the Fat Lady from the painting that serves as a portal to the Gryffindor dormitories. 

In addition to the actors who actually left the film franchise before it ended, there is another core cast member who almost left as well, this time of his own accord. The late Alan Rickman, who ultimately played Professor Severus Snape throughout all of the "Harry Potter" films, actually wanted to quit the series before the third movie, "Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban."

Alan Rickman was frustrated with the Harry Potter producers, director, and storyline

Alan Rickman's diaries spanning twenty-five years of his life were recently published as a book, "Madly, Deeply: The Diaries of Alan Rickman." In excerpts from the diaries published by The Guardian, Rickman expressed his desire to quit the "Harry Potter" series before the "Prisoner of Azkaban" film. He wrote, "Talking to [agent] Paul Lyon-Maris about HP exit, which he thinks will happen. But here we are in the project-collision area again. Reiterating no more HP. They don't want to hear it." Apparently, leaving "Harry Potter" was easier said than done. 

Rickman explained that his desire to leave "Harry Potter" was rooted in frustration with the producers and director. "Party at the Natural History Museum. The desire to eat and even more get a drink is matched only by the need to bang the three Davids' heads [Harry Potter producers David Heyman and David Barron, and director David Yates] against the nearest wall. I get the character development and the spiffing effects (dazzling), but where is the story????"

Obviously, Alan Rickman ultimately ended up staying with the series to portray Severus Snape in all eight films. He explained this decision in his diaries as well: "Finally, yes to HP5. The sensation is neither up nor down. The argument that wins is the one that says: 'See it through. It's your story.'" 

Lastly, Rickman expressed that he felt some satisfaction after sticking with the series and seeing how Snape is redeemed at the end, dying heroically and becoming one of the namesakes for Harry's child, Albus Severus, to whom Harry describes Snape as one of the bravest men who ever lived. Indeed, many fans think Snape is the best part of "Harry Potter."