Bowie had suffered from cancer for 18 months and also kept his illness a secret from all but close family.His death at 69 came as a huge shock to his fans globally.
The charity Pancreatic Cancer Action (PCA) said in a statement: “We were very sad to hear that one of Britain’s most popular actors, Alan Rickman, passed away after a short battle with pancreatic cancer.
”Our thoughts are with all his friends and family at this very sad time." Tumours in the pancreas do not usually produce any symptoms in the early stages and those that do appear are often associated with common illnesses, making cancer difficult to diagnose.
Symptoms include lower back or stomach pain, which gets worse after eating or lying down, weight loss and jaundice.
: “Pancreatic cancer is sometimes called a ‘silent cancer” because the early symptoms are often vague and unrecognised.
“Steve Jobs, Patrick Swayze and Pavarotti all died of pancreatic cancer.
Sir John Hurt is currently the only famous survivor of the disease.
Pancreatic cancer receives just one per cent of research funding.
Considering it’s the fifth biggest cancer killer, we think this is disgraceful.” Rickman's death comes just days after the passing of pioneering singer and artist David Bowie.
Younger audiences know him as Professor Snape from the Rickman's work in theater has been extensive, particularly earlier in his career, when he performed with such high-profile groups as the Royal Shakespeare Company and the Court Drama Group.
His breakthrough came when he was nominated for a Tony Award for Best Actor in a Play in 1987 for his role in Christopher Hampton's adaptation of .
PHOTOS: Stars We've Lost In Recent Years During the course of his long-running career, Rickman won numerous awards including an Emmy, a Golden Globe, a Screen Actors Guild Award, and a BAFTA. In April, the actor revealed that he married Horton in a secret ceremony in 2012, after dating for nearly 50 years.