JK Rowling apparently only trusted Alan Rickman with the secret of Severus Snape’s fate. Snape, whom Rickman portrayed in the film franchise based on Rowling’s book series, had been outed as a secret follower of Lord Voldemort’s in the sixth film and book, “Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince.” In reality, he was a double agent working to protect Harry Potter against Lord Voldemort. 

Alas, as per the Daily Mail, Snape’s heroic secret wouldn’t be disclosed to readers until the seventh and final book, at which time the films were only on Book 5. In a 2016 tweet per the Mail, Rowling told followers, “I told Alan what lies behind the word ‘always,'” referencing the reveal of Snape’s enduring love for Harry’s mother, Lily — a love that secured his loyalty to the good guys.

In a conversation from “Harry Potter 20th Anniversary: Return to Hogwarts,” Chris Columbus, who directed the franchise’s first two entries, shared how he used to beg Rickman for how it all would end. ‘Why are you doing that like that?,” Columbus recalled asking the actor (via the Daily Mail). Even Radcliffe himself only found out Rowling and Rickman’s secret like the rest of the population when the final book was released in 2007. “I’ll tell you later,'” Radcliffe remembered Rickman’s deflecting, adding, “He had the inside line.” 

Interestingly enough, in an open letter looking back on his time in the franchise, Rickman admitted that Rowling did give him “one small clue that persuaded me that Snape was more than an unchanging costume.” Perhaps he was referring to that line. How Snape-like of Rickman to keep such a secret from those he trusted!

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