Alan Rickman Called J.K. Rowling a 'Great Storyteller' in his Harry Potter Tribute

Rickman stands beside co-stars (L-R) Tom Felton, Emma Watson, Daniel Radcliffe, Rupert Grint and Matthew Lewis at the premiere of "Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows: Part 2" at Avery Fisher Hall, Lincoln Center on July 11, 2011 in New York City. Stephen Lovekin/Getty Images

An open letter written by the British actor Alan Rickman to J.K. Rowling and the global army of Harry Potter fans has resurfaced following the news of the actor's death on Thursday. The British acting great died at the age of 69, after a short battle with cancer.

The letter, written as the much-loved film franchise was wrapping, was originally published in Empire in 2011. Rickman reflects on his work in the film series, in which he played the mysterious Professor Severus Snape to great acclaim. He also praises J.K. Rowling for her masterful storytelling ability and speaks fondly of his young co-stars Emma Watson, Daniel Radcliffe and Rupert Grint.

I have just returned from the dubbing studio where I spoke into a microphone as Severus Snape for absolutely the last time," he wrote. "On the screen were some flashback shots of Daniel, Emma and Rupert from ten years ago. They were 12. I have also recently returned from New York, and while I was there, I saw Daniel singing and dancing (brilliantly) on Broadway."

"A lifetime seems to have passed in minutes."

"Three children have become adults since a phone call with Jo Rowling, containing one small clue, persuaded me that there was more to Snape than an unchanging costume, and that even though only three of the books were out at the time, she held the entire massive but delicate narrative in the surest of hands."

"It is an ancient need to be told stories. But the story needs a great storyteller. Thanks for all of it, Jo."

Alan Rickman's heartfelt goodbye letter to Snape and Harry Potter fans (2011)

— The Rowling Library (@rowlinglibrary) January 14, 2016

Today, Rowling showed the admiration was mutual as she joined the list of high profile names from the acting and literary world paying tribute to the actor.

There are no words to express how shocked and devastated I am to hear of Alan Rickman's death. He was a magnificent actor & a wonderful man.

— J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) January 14, 2016

My thoughts are with Rima and the rest of Alan's family. We have all lost a great talent. They have lost part of their hearts.

— J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) January 14, 2016