Oft imitated, never replicated: Hans Gruber of Die Hard is the consummate action movie antagonist. Many might say he is one of the best villains of all time. He has it all: culturally competent, refined, and coolly unafraid of using ruthless force.
Frequently listed among the best ‘80s movies, one of the most important things the iconic action film gave us was the late and beloved actor, Alan Rickman. Hans Gruber was Rickman’s first role in the film industry, and he took it on with such style and finesse that audiences are still awed by it decades later.
Costars and film personnel unanimously agreed Rickman was a delight to work with, starting a long-running trend of delightful Alan Rickman stories.
Rickman took an active role in developing Hans Gruber’s character, which made for many interesting stories about his experience behind the scenes of Die Hard. A lot went into Hans Gruber’s rise and inevitable fall, and Rickman was a big part of how the character came to life.
Rickman Learned To Love The Tools Of Gruber's TradePhoto: 20th Century Fox
While Hans Gruber is stone cold, Rickman wasn't used to being around all the shots fired on the set. The actor admitted that during such scenes, he would reflexively blink every time a shot went off near him.
Despite the initial fear, Rickman admitted he eventually had fun using the props.