Movie Villain Monday: The Sheriff of Nottingham - Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves (1991)
It’s Movie Villain Monday and today’s movie villain was suggested by a lot of you in the comments of my previous MVM posts on Facebook.
It’s The Sheriff of Nottingham from Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves (1991).
Who is The Sheriff of Nottingham?
George, Sheriff of Nottingham, is a corrupt official and sheriff/ruler of Nottingham. He is the main antagonist in the much loved adaptation of the 12th century folk tale and was played by the brilliant and sorely missed, Alan Rickman.
Whilst away fighting in the crusades, Richard The Lionheart, King of England, leaves the cruel Sheriff of Nottingham to rule the land. Aided by his cousin, Guy of Gisbourne, the witch Mortianna and the corrupt bishop of Hereford he rules with an iron fist.
The sheriff murders Robin’s father (a loyal follower of King Richard) for refusing to join him and sets his sights on taking the throne by marrying Lady Marian (the King’s cousin) and taking over for good.
Robin returns from fighting in the crusades, learns of his father’s murder and sets out to stop the sheriff, bring him to justice and restore peace to the land.
The Sheriff is motivated by greed and his desire for the crown and with it, power.
When Robin returns to Nottingham and attempts to thwart the Sheriff’s plans, his hatred for Robin also becomes a motivation.
Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves holds a special place in a lot of people’s hearts, probably because of its timeless story, but also largely due to the BAFTA Award winning performance by Rickman as the villainous and brutal (yet highly entertaining) Sheriff of Nottingham.
Surprisingly, he turned down the role twice before finally accepting it, eventually being told that if he took it he could more or less have complete freedom to do as he wished with the character (which might explain his larger than life performance).
Rumour has it too that Kevin Costner had scenes cut from the film if he felt he’d been upstaged by Rickman. Whether this is true or not I don’t suppose we’ll ever know for sure but on the film’s release, Alan Rickman and Morgan Freeman’s performances were highly praised while Costner’s was criticised, even earning him The Golden Raspberry Award for Worst Actor 😆.
It’s such a shame to have lost this incredible talent but thankfully we’ve got performances like this one to remember him by!
“Cancel the kitchen scraps for lepers and orphans, no more merciful beheadings...and call off Christmas!”
Who should I feature next..? 🤔