One of my favorite actors of all time has died. Alan Rickman was 69; he had cancer, hated, hateful cancer.
Younger audiences may only know him from the Harry Potter films. I first saw him in "Die Hard," which promptly became my favorite Christmas movie.
But he was beyond brilliant in "Michael Collins." He played Eamon de Valera, controversial Irish revolutionary and first president of the Irish Republic. When I was a kid my grandparents spoke of de Valera in tones of mixed reverence and fury. De Valera died in 1973, after sixty years as Taoiseach.
Here's Alan Rickman in "Michael Collins." My favorite is the altar server bit.